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placeholder As Lent begins, Rice Bowl needs filling

Tribute to Catholic Charities’ board chair to fund SafetyNet

Youth rally set for April 21 with easy BART access

Gifts of the Magi open diocese’s Golden Jubilee year

Workshop offers a sampler for selecting wedding music

Improve communication, improve marriage

Catholic trends mirror society’s, but vision is different

Black History Month events

Mardi Gras celebration benefits cathedral music

Assumption athlete earns Marty Mart scholarship

placeholder February 6, 2012   •   VOL. 50, NO. 3   •   Oakland, CA
Improve communication, improve marriage

Improving communication skills is the subject of the first of what are expected to be several seminars offered during the year by the Diocese of Oakland, in conjunction with Healthy Relationships California.

Catholic weddings

For information on readings and music, visit: http://foryourmarriage.org/catholic-marriage/planning-a-catholic-wedding/
Lorrie Gramer, with her husband Don, has directed the family life ministry in the Diocese of Rockford, Ill., for 30 years. Recently she made the move to half-time with the Rockford diocese to become a part-time consultant to Healthy Relationships California.

In those 30 years, she said, they have helped 25,000 couples prepare for marriage.

“We tell them, after the wedding, the caterers and florist disappear, but we are there,” she said.

The Church’s continued support of marriage is critical, Gramer said. “We need to do all we can to strengthen and promote marriage.”

One means of support is through marriage education programs, such as the ones offered through the federally funded Healthy Relationships California program. The Mastering the Mysteries of Love seminars focus on communication skills.

After the wedding, the caterers and florist disappear, and the Church’s continued support to marriage is critical.
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“We are trying to help couples ‘raise the bar’ in their marriage,” Gramer said.

The skills, she said, “help us understand how to be a better listener. Our relationships will be better if we listen. A good listener is really a learner.”

The seminar offered March 17 in Oakland in the parish hall at the Cathedral of Christ the Light, will be centered on offering some concrete skills, as well as the opportunity for the couples to practice the skill. While there is no fee for the seminar or the training manual, a collection will be taken up to cover the cost of lunch.

Ed Hopfner, director of family life in the Diocese of Oakland, called it a “great opportunity” to be able to offer these sessions at the Cathedral Parish Hall.

Participants, he said, will “learn practical skills to communicate better with your loved one.”

This session will be offered in English, although Hopfner said the diocese hopes to train facilitators to offer the seminars in Spanish.E

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