February 7-14 is National Marriage Week. This is the week leading up to Valentine’s Day. More and more in recent years, society has been trying to throw off traditional “constraints,” toting ideas that love cannot be defined or restrained. Marriage is seen as unfavorable to a portion of society and cohabitation seems to be on the rise. National Marriage Week highlights marriage through promotion and celebration, and we at NAME believe it is a great thing to be a part of.
We encourage you to take action. Seek out if there are any local community events or organize one yourself. It can be as simple as a couple’s picnic in the park. It is also a great opportunity for churches to offer a marriage event for the people of their congregation and community nearing Valentine’s Day. You can find out more about National Marriage Week at http://www.nationalmarriageweekusa.org/.
NAME has some ideas for National Marriage Week as well!
For the individual couple:
- Plan date nights and post on social media using the hashtag #natlmarriageweek
- Attend a local marriage seminar
- Get a marriage book or devotional to start working through together
- Take Gary Chapman’s 5 Love Languages quiz
- Throw a party and invite your married friends, complete with the Newlywed Game
For the Community:
- Ask your local news station to feature the longest married couple in the area
- A fair or picnic in the park for couples
- Dance night with a couples costume contest and prizes
- Buying marriage materials in bulk and pass it out free to the community
- Write your local governor/mayor/congressman to issue a statement
For the Church and/or NAME Centers:
- Plan a marriage seminar or event
- Preach about marriage on Sunday February 8th
- Plan a date night for the couples of the church (ideas: game night, comedy, dancing, talent show, potluck and romantic movie night)
- Provide free childcare so that couples can go on a date
- Advertise that your local NAME center provides free marriage counseling
- Start the training process to put a NAME center in your church
- Offer free weddings to cohabitating couples who cannot afford their weddings (an idea that our NAME center at Living Word Bible Church in Mesa, AZ successfully accomplished!)