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Schoenstatt
Apostolic Movement

Just Married – Schoenstatt’s course for the first stage of marriage

By: Richard and Ingeborg Sickinger

The Schoenstatt marriage preparation course in Austria is a quality product appreciated equally by the engaged couples and the bishop for the Family in Austria, Msgr. Hermann Glettler. More than a thousand young couples have already completed the marriage preparation course, thus developing important foundations for their life together. In this way they have their first contact with Schoenstatt, and thereby with Father Kentenich’s marriage pedagogy and the source of graces from the Shrine, especially from the home shrine.

In order for young couples to receive further orientation – Pope Francis considers the accompaniment of young families to be an essential task – the Schoenstatt Movement Austria designed an advanced course, which has now been implemented for the first time. It began in October 2022. Over 10 monthly meetings, which they call dates, the couples built on the foundations of their marriage and deepened their mission.

A total of 16 young couples participated in the first season of Just Married, distributed over three courses. Their motto is: “Never stop growing.” On October 14, 2023, the course was held in Schoenstatt Kahlenberg, a family center in Austria. The course is aimed at couples married within the Church who are in the first years of their marriage. The meetings took place in Austria, but in the new season of the course (which has already begun), one of the courses will be held online, and has participating couples from three countries.

What do the first participants have to say?

Some couples tell us why Just Married was an important experience in their lives:

“Because it reinforces the Christian ideal of marriage but does not devalue other forms” (Theresa and David Aichner).

“Because it combines spirituality with everyday life” (Martina and Christian Haumer).

“Because we talk about the great things in life” (Veronika and Ferdinand Prinz).

Conclusion in the Shrine

Joy for what has been achieved and prayers for the future – for the couples and for the Just Married course as a whole – led to Holy Mass with Fr. Heinrich Walter in the Shrine.

The families accompanying the Just Married couples: Helga and Helmut Schröer; Christine and Gerald Karner (in attendance with baby Elias – 14 hours old at the time); and Doris and Walter Heider responded in unison: “We are so blessed – we would do it again any time!”.

A nice celebration followed.

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