What does it take for a married couple to be able to have some authentic quality time together? Everyone knows it’s not easy to get a date on the calendar, let alone decide where to go and what to do, get a reservation, figure out where to park, and of course, budget for the expense. Well, NY Tri-State Regnum Christi has partnered with St. Paul Parish in Greenwich, Connecticut, to solve this dilemma. The answer is monthly Evenings for Married Couples. Picture a beautiful sanctuary dimly lit with candles, quiet music setting the mood, plenty of room to sit together without feeling crowded, and a program that includes a short reflection tailored to how to enrich one’s marriage while finding peace amidst the challenges of daily life. And to think all this can be accomplished without a reservation, credit card, dressing up, or tricky parking! Certainly, this is an answer to married couples’ prayers.
These special marriage evenings are offered on the first Thursday of every month, and the first one occurred on October 6. Couples began arriving just prior to the 7:30 pm start time and were greeted by volunteers who welcomed them to this “come as you are” experience with a simple program outlining the evening. Father Jorge Obregon, LC, began by bringing out the monstrance, while those who desired joined in singing O Salutaris Hostia. With Jesus present on the altar, Father Jorge began his short reflection on how each spouse is a gift to the other. Interweaving scripture with real-life stories, Father was able to inspire each couple to gain a new appreciation for his/her spouse. After his talk, couples were invited to discuss these two questions: “When, by your attitude towards your wife/your husband, have you forgotten that she/he is a gift that has been entrusted to you?” and “When have you been a gift to your spouse in a concrete way recently?” As each couple drew closer together to discuss these questions, the music was raised to allow for some intimate sharing.
After about ten minutes, the time came for benediction and the singing of Te Deum. Once Jesus was reposed in the tabernacle, all were invited to the parish connector for some hospitality. With smiles all around, the joyful mood continued as couples mingled with each other. All had the opportunity to speak with Father Jorge Obregon, LC, pastor Father Les Szymaszek, and Father Eric Nielsen, LC. Everyone left refreshed, reinvigorated, and ready to return the following month with other married friends eager for marital enrichment.
Hope Hirshorn is the RC Director for the NY Tri-State. Hope has a M.A., M.Phil. and Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Fordham, a M.P.A. and A.P.C in finance from NYU, and a certificate in Marian studies from her time in London. She and her husband reside in West Harrison, NY, and are the proud parents of six children.