IrishLove™
Master October 2013

Calling all my Catholic brides (who are already married/ or done pre-cana!)

IrishLove™, on February 6, 2013 at 10:28 AM Posted in Planning 0 31
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Alright ladies not going to let I am a little on the nervous side...

FH and I go to a 6 long hour long pre-cana class on Sat. (I much rather get it done in one day and in a group setting then over the course of 6 weeks) anyways...

What should be expect from this? What is going to happen during this? And what type of questions will be asked? I have no idea what FH and I are walking into.

31 Comments

Latest activity by IrishLove™, on February 6, 2013 at 5:39 PM
  • Aimee
    Devoted September 2012
    Aimee ·
    • Flag

    Well when we did it it was more them talking to you than you answering questions or anything. We did have to introuduce ourselves and say generic info like where we got engaged and when we were getting married.

    The first class (we did 2 Sundays of 5 hours each) was realllllly boring. We had different speakers and one went on forever. We did some of the activities out of the work books we were given and I think we were given one thing of homework (really simple, we had to write a letter to ourselves they would mail us like 3 months later).

    I assume every class is different, but I wouldnt be too worried. Bring snacks! I wish I had, they gave us like 2 ten minute breaks and having something to munch on would have been nice lol

    • Reply
  • IrishLove™
    Master October 2013
    IrishLove™ ·
    • Flag

    Thanks Aimee, I paid $90 which includes my material and lunch for us. Not sure how long lunch will be hopefully a decent amount of time. 2 hours each for 2 weeks wow... I we only have to do this 6 hour class and then I have to call my church and set up an interview with the priest/deacon after we are done with the class.

    All I can think of it is going to be like Sunday School and truth be told I NEVER paid attention in Sunday School I was either on my phone or off in space some place! lol

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  • Aimee
    Devoted September 2012
    Aimee ·
    • Flag

    Wow, i think ours was $120 and we got nothing but the work book! We either had the option to do an "engaged encounter" weekend, where you went away overnight (no thank you!), 4 or 5 weeknight classes of 2 hours each, or 2 Sunday classes that were each 5 hours..so we went with that. It just seemed easier.

    Hahaha I definitely expected it to be more like Sunday school, and a lot more "group activities" and I guess depending on where you go it could be like that, but ours wasnt. The one thing I did find helpful was the financial planner they had speak to us, everything else kind of just felt like "well duh" since DH and I have been together so long. It was interesting though, especially when they got to family planning methods lol

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  • M
    Dedicated July 2012
    Meghan ·
    • Flag

    It is really not as bad as it sounds. It's going through a booklet talking about things like children, finances, etc. You and your FH will both answer questions throughout and compare your answers. You will talk about where you differed. They will most likely ask you to share your answers. It is really not as bad as it sounds. Just be lucky that you do not have to go for a weekend!

    http://happinessiscreating.com/my-wedding/

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  • Vanessa R.
    VIP February 2014
    Vanessa R. ·
    • Flag

    Im having a hard time having the priest call us back from the church we want to get married, i left 2 messages and dont want to keep calling so may just go there. not sure what their pre-cana is like but i do know when i called to ask about the wedding the receptionist asked if we live together

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  • Lily
    Expert April 2013
    Lily ·
    • Flag

    We're doing ours online because the schedules they had for the live pre-cana sessions were not doable for us. I can tell you from the online version, which we haven't completed yet and hope to do so by this weekend, it's very interesting. The speakers get to be boring at times, but the workbooks are really interesting if done correctly. We both do ours separately and then discuss them together...it's stuff that we've already discussed before, but it's nice to write it down and see how closely we match our answers. I personally love the finances part because it's hilarious: I'm the shopaholic and not in denial so I know it and he's frugal and on point with budgeting, so we compromise. He has helped me budget myself and even include a budget for my monthly shopping with a separate shoe budget...I LOVE my FH! lol

    @Vanessa, it may be best if you go to the church as sometimes they don't get these messages. I love our priest, and he's great about responding, but they're not all like that Smiley winking

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  • IrishLove™
    Master October 2013
    IrishLove™ ·
    • Flag

    Vanessa, we live together so I am worried about that but at the same time it 2013, we do not have children, and to me I rather know I can live with a person then not live with a person. Anyways I had the same issue and my church doesn't do it is so small so I went on my diocese website and found classes being offered and signed up... maybe you can do that.

    And Meghan thanks! I think I am just worried because I have heard horrid stories about it.

    • Reply
  • Lizz M.
    Master March 2013
    Lizz M. ·
    • Flag

    It's honestly not that bad, but it varies from parish to parish. We did the weekend one for one 4 hour class and one 6 hour class. Friday night & Saturday.

    Honestly, when FH and I left, we were in an awesome place with each other. We had talked about a lot of it (finances, communication, having kids) but we hadn't talked about things like what would happen if one of us can't have kids or if us having kids together doesn't work. It does make you face some issues you may not have talked about - we were shocked at the number of people that hadn't talked about bank accounts.

    The speakers can get boring... we had a Deacon come up and talk to us last for 45 minutes about how living together is bad, pre martial sex is a sin, blah blah blah. It's definitely one of those things you get what you put into it. Good luck!

    • Reply
  • Lucky me
    Master June 2013
    Lucky me ·
    • Flag

    We did ours the same way you are. It was actually really nice! We both enjoyed the day. The days is broken up into different lectures. Like money, communication, sex etc etc. We also did some worksheets together. It was nice because it got us to talk about things that we didn't think of before. Like how would we split up the holidays, if a parent got sick would it be ok for them to live with you? Things like that. We left feeling good.

    @Vanessa we live together and also at our pre cana there was a pregnant girl lol

    • Reply
  • MJ
    Master June 2013
    MJ ·
    • Flag

    It is so much easier to get it done in one day. It is really painless.

    • Reply
  • We'llAlwaysHaveParis
    Master November 2013
    We'llAlwaysHaveParis ·
    • Flag

    My experience with Pre-Cana was a waste - which is why I told FH I think our best bet is Engaged Encounter (no one I know has had a bad experience).

    Here's why I say Pre-Cana was a waste. We did the 1 hour a week for 4 or 6 weeks. It was a hundred couples (or more) thrown into a church basement's open space with a raised floor at one end. Couples sat at long banquet tables and there were a lot of distractions.

    Each week there was a different topic. Couples would talk to the group and then there were worksheets each couple was to fill out. No one, or at least no one around us, took it seriously. It was fulfilling a requirement.

    So, the presenter(s) would speak. Then we'd be expected to talk to our partner who was seated across the table from each of us. However, it's hard to have a personal conversation with the person across from you, when their was someone on either side of you talking to their partner who was next to yours on the other side. Not a conducive environment (cont)

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  • We'llAlwaysHaveParis
    Master November 2013
    We'llAlwaysHaveParis ·
    • Flag

    (cont)

    The worksheets were scribbled on (maybe) and few people actually spent time really talking.

    My ex and I had a lot of problems after we were married that in all honestly, even in hindsight, that I never saw coming. I spent 9 months in therapy trying to sort this, and other things out.

    I wonder if he and I had actually been forced to spend quality time together, actually discussing real problems, concerns, values, interests etc, if we would have gotten married in the first place. I'm stubborn so maybe we would have. However, Pre-Cana is good in theory, but when we took the classes it was poorly executed.

    Engaged Encounter is a weekend long class. You spend a lot of time alone with your FH to discuss things. I believe a priest and sponsor couples also meet with you, alone, as a couple to also get you talking and communicating. Even non-Catholics I know who have done it say it was worthwhile.

    I suppose it's like anything. You get out of it what you put into it. (cont)

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  • We'llAlwaysHaveParis
    Master November 2013
    We'llAlwaysHaveParis ·
    • Flag

    (cont)

    However, I was extremely disappointed with our Pre-Cana classes (even at the time), and now I get to wonder how things might have been different.

    Marriage is hard. There are issues you just don't foresee. It became clear divorce was our only option and I thought the ex would be glad it was over. Instead he ramped up his awfulness and it was an awful, messy divorce, with 2 kids (one unplanned) in the middle.

    I would take Pre-Cana seriously and take a good hard look at each other and your relationship. Make sure that this is absolutely the person you want to spend the rest of your life with. Divorce is an emotional and financial wrecking ball. If you think losing $10k (random number) you have invested in your wedding, I assure you it cost me more to divorce and fight for custody than it did to get married, and over the years (my kids are 5 and 4) I will continue to spend money for legal fees (custody related).

    I don't want to lecture / come off as a know-it-all b!tch, (cont

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  • We'llAlwaysHaveParis
    Master November 2013
    We'llAlwaysHaveParis ·
    • Flag

    (cont)

    my story isn't unlike a lot of others I've heard since my own divorce (people love a good ear to sympathize) and I wouldn't wish that hell on anyone.

    Enjoy the class and I hope yours is better executed than ours :-)

    The Catholic Church cannot save anyone from themselves (nor can anyone else), but they TRY. They want couples to succeed. The couples who present during their classes WANT you to get something out of it.

    • Reply
  • Michele, my Belle
    Super December 2012
    Michele, my Belle ·
    • Flag

    @ Paris,

    I recently went through the annulment process and completed the 33 page questionnaire/interview. If I had completed a pre-cana process as rigorous as the annulment process, I would have known my first marriage was not a good idea - too many potential problems.

    • Reply
  • Luckycollection
    Luckycollection ·
    • Flag

    I did Pre-Cana 42 years ago!! We were the first in the area to have a "Pre-Cana" conference, as our Diocese changed from Fresno in 1971 to Monterey, CA, and the Bishop lives here.

    Actually it was fun. It was free..held at the parish hall, with 300 couples. It was 4 hours commencing at 1PM-5PM. This is how they broke it up:

    1. Fr. Felix- gave an inspired speech..made everyone relax, laugh, no "lecturing"..45 minutes, 15 minute question/answer period. You can ask anything!

    2. They had 2 Married Couples who were Catholic, married 30-40 years and they honesty shared their experiences and the ups and downs of marraige and how they worked thru their problems. There was also a question and answer period.

    3. They had an OBGYN- sex and birth control, abortion, relationships, making sex better (Yes..I had to chuckle here..in a Catholic church..)..and of course you can ask a lot of questions.

    4. Fr. Felix spoke again about relationships and birthcontrol . He was very "broad-mineded

    • Reply
  • Luckycollection
    Luckycollection ·
    • Flag

    I a glad we got it done in one day instead of going thru the expense of a retreat.. I know things have changed now....

    • Reply
  • Luckycollection
    Luckycollection ·
    • Flag

    There are too many rules now with the Catholic Church which prevent couples who do want to get married in the church get married elsewhere..my thoughts.

    • Reply
  • We'llAlwaysHaveParis
    Master November 2013
    We'llAlwaysHaveParis ·
    • Flag

    @Michele - my first marriage was also recently annulled. I have a new appreciation for the Catholic Church now. I understand WHY some people are critical sometimes, but everyone I worked with at the church and throughout the process were wonderful. It took almost a year, but it was a worthwhile process.

    The questionnaire is a beast though isn't it, but I loved it. I got a lot of insight and it was a bit therapeutic to put it all out there too.

    I'm very hopeful about the Engaged Encounter, but I also know FH and I have a really solid relationship. We've already spent a lot of time talking talking talking about all the not-so-fun stuff too. We just have something my ex and I just never had or ever would have.

    • Reply
  • IrishLove™
    Master October 2013
    IrishLove™ ·
    • Flag

    Thanks ladies. I guess I am just nervous because and don't get me wrong I was raised Catholic and is it my choice to still be practing it and if I didn't respect it then I wouldn't still attend mass and I wouldn't go through all of this to get married and I wouldn't promise to raise my kids Catholic. BUT when I was born my dad and bio mom weren't married in fact she was going through a divorce and "trapped" my dad into marrying her. He went and talked to a Franciscan and told him he didn't love her and he didn't believe in divorce. He told my dad then not to marry her. fast forward to me, my dad had to fight for me to be baptized and throughout my whole Sunday School experience (I have the same teacher for most of it he moved up with us since his granddaughter/grandson were in my class) used me as an example as to why pre-material sex is bad. I look at it differently and the church and I don't see eye to eye. I just don't want to hear a lecture on how FH living together is a sin ..

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