Project Documents

Date of Award

1994

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

James J. North, Jr.

Second Advisor

Norman K. Miles

Third Advisor

Walter B. T. Douglas

Abstract

Statement of Project. Every pastor is involved in performing marriages. Pastors are also spending a considerable amount of time in post-marital counseling. This project sought to design and implement a Premarital Education program to help prepare couples for marriage and to reduce the number of hours pastors spend with post-marital care. The sessions in the model may prepare couples for life's challenges as they learn to develop communication and coping skills. It is hoped the sessions will aid the couple in handling marital adjustment and in dealing with conflict.

Method. This project report explores a brief history of Premarital Education in the Seventh-day Adventist Church and then examines the current status. Ten metropolitan Toronto church pastors helped in gathering this data. With the aid of biblical resources and the Spirit of Prophecy, a theological base is set forth in the context of Premarital Education. At the conclusion of the project, a model is presented as a program for the Toronto Perth Avenue Seventh-day Adventist Church. It is hoped that pastors will use this model as a springboard for developing their own models.

Conclusion. Preparation is an obvious theme in Scripture. The pastor/shepherd must follow this motif as he/she prepares couples for a lifelong covenant. The results of the evaluation confirm the theory that pastors must use a proven and tried premarital program before marrying a couple. The evaluation also suggests that a premarital program may be a contributing factor in resolving some of the problems in dysfunctional marriages. The couples of the Perth Avenue Seventh-day Adventist Church who received premarital education have benefitted enormously from this project.

Subject Area

Marriage counseling, Marriage compatibility tests, Marriage--Religious aspects--Seventh-day Adventists

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