City Harvest’s pre-marital workshop prepares soon-to-be-wed or newlywed couples on the timeless pillars of a strong, everlasting marriage.
Many couples often forget that the wedding day is not the “finale” of their wedding preparations; on the contrary, it is the beginning of a new journey.
In order to help Christian couples with both the practical and spiritual aspects of planning a wedding and marriage, City Harvest Church’s pre-marital workshop, Happily Ever After, was organized during the first quarter of 2013.
Each series comprises five different sessions held weekly, touching on topics such as Christian marriage, the concept of leaving and cleaving, roles and responsibilities of husband and wife, dealing with the in-laws, sex and husband-and-wife communication.
Presented in a classroom setting with a Q&A session at the end, the sessions are conducted by pastors Yong Te-chong and Jeremy Choy, drawing from not only textbook teachings but also their own experience of married life, the latter of which occasionally drawing much laughter from the students.
“For a great marriage, every couple needs to be committed to growing, changing, communicating and working on their relationship no matter what happens,” says Choy.
In order to help couples understand and appreciate each other better, students are encouraged to undertake a DISC profiling test, a behavior assessment tool. By understanding each other’s personality traits, spouses are more likely to avoid conflict and be more sensitive towards the needs and desires of his or her partner.
Toward the end of the five-week session, couples on the procedures of wedding planning. He also touched on the intricate details in the area of financial planning such as from the market rate to give to a helper for the actual wedding day to various tips for a debt free wedding. Such real issues often arouse interest and curiosity in the session, as most of the couples will be getting married this year 2013 and are already in the midst of their wedding preparation.
For customer service officer Dan Lee, 30, and his wife, Wen Xi, 25, who got married at the end of March, the course was a good refresher of the keys to a fulfilling marriage, one of which was learning to put each other before self.
“It is important for us to know how to bond as a couple and what to expect in a marriage, which is an unknown path. We need to know our roles and responsibilities and we are glad that the workshop has helped us learn to pave our near future as husband and wife,” shared Lee.
“The Happily Ever After workshop is a useful tool in preparing couples to be mentally prepared for questions such as, ‘Why do I want to be married?’ and ‘What do I expect in marriage?’ It will save both parties in a relationship a lot of heartache if they understand the biblical perspective behind marriage,” says Choy.
When Luke Met Catherine
Luke Chee and Catherine Soon attended a Tic Tac Toe event organized by CHC’s Singles Committee, now known as City Connexions, in 2009. The fine dining event was held at The Legends at Fort Canning Park. Before the event, participants mingled and exchanged contacts, and that was when Chee met Soon. He was smitten. She was beautiful, approachable and friendly. He plucked up his courage and asked for her number.
After nine months of communicating through MSN chat and SMS texting, Chee decided to take the friendship further and asked Soon out on a double date with another couple from church. It was Chee’s sincerity that touched Soon. When it was her birthday, he waited patiently for her to finish her celebration with her friends, just to pass her a birthday gift. Although their personalities were different, Soon felt very comfortable with Chee.
One day, while they were chatting, Chee suddenly brought out a bunch of roses, went down on his knees and asked Soon to be his steady girlfriend. After two years, the couple tied the knot in October 2010, both of them in their early thirties.
They are both grateful and appreciate what the City Connexions team is doing for the singles in City Harvest. Says Chee, “Without meaningful events like these, I would never have met my wife. Thank you for all the effort you’ve put into building lives!”