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Natrona County Marriage and Family Alliance

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06/01/2007 - A wedding is for a day but a marriage is for a lifetime. This is a well-known axiom but observers of our society might think we practice just the opposite. The money spent on invitations, flowers, caterers, photographers and other amenities briefly captures our attention. What we seem to miss in all of the joyful celebration is teaching people embarking on one of life's greatest challenges the important of developing marriage-saving qualities such as respect, commitment, patience, forgiveness and trust.

We need to help couples sustain their lifelong relationship in a manner that might break the cycle of divorce in their families and which will certainly provide stability and well-being for any children of the union between the couples.

A strong and lasting marriage requires thoughtfulness, preparation and continuing nurture and support. A group of 18 persons representing a variety of denominations in the Casper area have signed a community marriage covenant. This document was prepared over several months by a committee representing mainline denominations and the evangelical sector.

The purpose of the covenant is to prepare couples to have that loving, successful marriage that defeats divorce by offering adequate courtship time, and at least 4 months of marriage preparation. And, a key element of the covenant, will offer couples support and mentoring after their marriage in order to deepen their relationship. A major tool in this effort will be married couples trained as mentors who have been able to overcome challenges in their relationships.

The Natrona County Marriage and Family Alliance has been formed to support organizations and individuals in the community who believe in marriage as they carry out the covenant's goals.

The organization will make available lists of resources and programs to support couples planning to marry; couples who want to create successful stepfamilies; couples having significant problems in their marriages; and couples with "good enough" marriage relationships who want to make them even better.

The Alliance plans to sponsor regular community events to highlight the importance of marriage. For more information on the Alliance and the Community Marriage Covenant contact Terri at 473-2273 or Ed and Pat at 237-2723; and Pat at 237-9743.

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