Project Documents

Date of Award

2014

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Willie Oliver

Second Advisor

Ronald Flowers

Third Advisor

Merlin Knowles

Abstract

Problem

The New Bethel Seventh-day Adventist Church in Antigua and Barbuda had four marriage enrichment seminars, covering general topics, between 2006 and 2010. However, based on my observations the marital satisfaction of those who attended did not appear to improve as a result of these seminars. Matters such as commitment, communication issues, and handling conflict seemed to be the major factors which accounted for low marital satisfaction. The development of a seminar to address these specific needs was thought to be advantageous.

Method

A weekend seminar entitled, “Committed to my Spouse” was developed and presented in August 2013. A didactic approach was taken with the use of power point presentations and DVD illustrations. Focus groups were also incorporated as a form of assessment and analysis. In order to measure change the ENRICH Marital Satisfaction Scale (EMS Scale) was used as a pre and post-test. The seminar focused on three core areas, commitment, communication skills, and problem solving. The success of the seminar was measured by employing the responses of the study sample to the EMS Scale and to their participation in a focus group.

Results

Twelve couples met the participation requirements and voluntarily decided to be a part of the study. One hundred percent (100%) of the couples attended all of the sessions. Results of the pre-test indicated that 75% of the participants indicated moderate to high levels of marital satisfaction while 25% indicated low to very low levels of marital satisfaction. Three months after delivery of the weekend seminar a post-test revealed that 77.3% indicated moderate to high levels of marital satisfaction while 22.7% of the respondents indicated low to very low levels of marital satisfaction. Since the completion of the study, one couple has separated.

Conclusions

Data collected through the EMS Scale did not indicate a significant variance between the pre and post assessments. However, focus group responses from the study sample suggest significant benefit was received from the marriage education process.

Subject Area

Marriage--Religious aspects; Marriage mentoring; Church work with married people--Seventh-day Adventists; New Bethel Seventh-day Adventist Church (Antigua/Barbuda)

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