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Home News Couples' Seminar (or Bootcamp)
Couples' Seminar (or Bootcamp)

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From October 11 to 13 and again from October 15 to 17 we held a seminar for Poltava region Christian couples in the village of Kopylov, at the hotel "Zelena Dubrava". A team of American ministry workers, five couples, shared an amazing seminar with us.

The seminar dealt with common and popular topics: "I", "We", "Us and God ," "Us, God and the world." At first glance it may seem that it is all too commonplace. Is there anything new to say about these things? But the speakers still managed to surprise us... The speakers had a goal - to make the marriages of the participants stronger and happier in two days. It's a worthwhile goal, but the conditions were hard. Imagine a lovely hotel courtyard, park, swings, beds, a lake, swans, and even peacocks, and in that wonderful setting we had two days packed with work. Praise God, the organizers did not forget that hard working people need to eat: they fed us generous portions of delicious food in the hotel restaurant. We stayed in guest rooms that had been romantically decorated. But, at the same time, we had no time for telephones, television, or even for talking to other couples. We only had time to listen to the speakers, do the assignments, and enjoy the fellowship, but only with each other. The last was the most difficult...

It may seem that this leisure was more like the limited life in a monastery, but it wasn't. The seminars were not like a monastery or prison. The teachers wanted to show the couples their inadequacy and poverty in their relationships with the people on earth most dear to them. As a result, that time alone together helped us achieve a new joy in love and deep intimacy. We have not learned to live in a marriage! We live like single people, even though we are married; we wear a lot of different masks, but God did not intend for marriage to be like that! But how can we focus on our spouse so that our marriage will "grow up" spiritually? And that is what they taught us.
Couples who realized that they have problems and wanted to find a way out started by carefully recording their feelings on paper and turning them into a dialogue. They had to answer tough questions: "who am I?", "what masks am I wearing?", "how does it make me feel?", "what makes me disappointed?" And so on ... There were a lot of questions.

The first day was not relaxing. Still, each couple that made the effort was surprised and pleased at what happened in their relationship. Masks were dropped, love was re-ignited, the TV and telephone lost their appeal; the couples didn't want to be separated even for a moment.
By the morning of the next day almost all of the participants had learned to describe their feelings, have a conversation and go without contact with the outside world. An enjoyable 90 minute "test" was the exercise of writing a letter to their beloved and then spending another 90 minutes with the recipient of the letter. After that, it was impossible not to feel in love, or to feel unromantic or unhappy. The impressions of the participants were striking: the men, one by one, trying to share what they felt. They told about re-discovering the woman they loved. One can only guess how thankful the wives were for this! The goal was achieved, and though it's hard to believe, it took only two days.

After training the ministers of our churches decided to revise the seminar program for Ukrainians, and as quickly as possible to put it into action. Watch for the announcements and don't miss the chance to test the strength of your relationship and experience a deep transformation in your marriage. May our families be happy in the way that the Lord God intended!

Ira Kovalenko

All photos are available here

Сімейний уікенд

Сімейний уікенд

Сімейний уікенд

 
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