Archbishop of Medellin looking at 3-phase, 1-year-plus program.
Archbishop Ricardo Antonio Tobón Restrepo of the Colombian archdiocese of Medellín wants Catholic marriage preparation courses to last more than a year, in order to “help young people understand and celebrate the sacrament, and to encourage the spouses in their conjugal life.”
According to the official website of the bishops’ conference of Colombia, the archbishop of Medellín wants to reinforce and consolidate the implementation of the “Catechumenal Itineraries for Married Life” established by the Vatican.
3 Phases of preparation for marriage
To this end, he emphasizes three phases of preparation for Catholic marriage:
The first phase of “marriage catechumenate” should last “for about a year” and should begin with a “rite of commitment.”
The second phase should include some additional months of “more immediate preparation” for marriage, including a “retreat before the wedding.”
Lastly, the third phase is oriented toward “helping the recently married couple,” and it should last two or three years. It’s an itinerary focused on a personal encounter with Christ, which should “include various stages: reflection, dialogue, prayer, community, liturgical life, and celebrations.”
While he recognizes that it might not be possible to implement this entire plan immediately, he calls for steps to be taken for it to become a reality in a not-too-distant future.