What up what up, party people! This blog is for any engaged couples, not just ones getting married in the Catholic Church. It’s worth the read for you both as a couple as I tell you what we went through to get to know each other more and strengthen our relationship during our engagement. I'll kick this off by saying not everyone's experience is the same. For some reason, requirements are different for each diocese so make sure to talk to your priest about your requirements.
The priest who was marrying us was part of the Oakland Diocese, even though we were getting married in Sacramento. We loved that priest because his sermons resonated with us every time we listened to him. Small fun fact: his name is Father Matthew, and my husband’s name is Matthew… and our priest was younger than my husband.
Father Matthew told us we needed to take this couples test called FOCCUS online then meet with a Deacon after that. Cool, no big deal. It’s got to be one of those quick compatibility quizzes like you see on Facebook, right? NOPE. This test was 186 questions long y’all! Yup, 186 questions where we had to click “Agree”, “Disagree” or “Uncertain” on statements. We absolutely could not look at each other’s answers or talk about it, and we had to take it separately.
Before I go on about it, I’m going to list a few of the statements we answered below. Think about you and your partner when reading and if you’d pick Agree, Disagree or Uncertain.
My future spouse spends too much time with technology
How my future spouse deals with change is a problem for me
I am concerned about some financial decisions made by my future spouse
We have discussed which traditions and customs each of us will bring from our families to this marriage
We have discussed the parenting roles each of us will have in raising children
I fully support my future spouse’s occupation or career plans
I am hoping that after marriage my future spouse will change some of his/her behaviors
WE have discussed the ways our families solve problems and how this may affect our problem -solving
My future spouse finds it difficult to let go of past hurts
We are in agreement about how we will make banking and financial decisions between us
We have discussed the expectations each of us has to our role as husband and wife
We took the test and about a month or two later, we met with Deacon Tim. At our meeting, Deacon Tim brought out both of our answers and we focused on statements that we didn’t agree on. We had no idea how uncomfortable it was going to get. Here we were talking to this person we were meeting for the first time about real topics that can make or break a marriage; but, he made it such a safe and honest space with no judgement that it ended up being our most favorite part of our engagement.
There were a lot of questions we were uncertain about because we just never talked about it. Not only did we learn about how we view our relationship and how we wanted it to be, but we learned so much about