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Fall 2019 Quarterly Newsletter
Fully Engaged is committed to serving parishes and the facilitators in their mission to provide quality marriage preparation and formation for the engaged couples they minister to. This is the first of a quarterly newsletter to enhance this ministry.

Our goal is to share tips, tools, new materials, and current articles/media on marriage that will aid Fully Engaged Facilitators in their work. Please share this with the other mentors in your parish. You may also wish to share the email addresses of mentor couples with us so they can receive future editions directly. Send email addresses to Chris Codden at ccodden@gw.stcdio.org.
For Leaders
Preparing couples for marriage, supporting families, and educating the faithful on the Church’s teaching about marriage and family are all valuable ministries. To help you in your ministry, we’ve compiled resources here for your use and reference, and we’ll continue to update the page in the coming months. We hope and pray that they aid you in your work! Click here to go to For Your Marriage
New Catholic Identity Supplement
In our work with engaged couples, discussing their participation in the sacraments of Eucharist and Reconciliation, we continually here comments, such as, "It's been so long, I don't even know what to do when I go into the confessional." or "We are so busy. It's hard to get to Mass." or "We've just moved, and haven't joined a parish yet." While the Couple's Workbook addresses these topics, the rubrics were not included. To aid you in your discussion with the engaged couple, we developed the Catholic Identity Supplement. This is a good resource to give the couple as homework before you discuss the "Catholic Identity" section.

Click here to download our newest resource from our website.

The additional resources listed on the back page of the supplement are also listed on a new page on our website: http://www.getfullyengaged.com/engaged-couples-resources/ This page also has the Financial and Infertility & Adoption Supplements and links.

All three supplements are available online to download for free or they may be purchased in packs of 10 for $10. To order, log in and click on ‘Order Materials’ in the upper right corner of your Parish Page. Materials can be ordered 24/7.
Lack of Eucharistic Belief: Faithful Affected by Secularism’s Strong Pull
from National Catholic Register Posted by Father Raymond J. de Souza Oct 26th, 2019
The news from the Pew Research Center on faith in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist was more alarmist than accurate. The truth is something rather different from what Pew reported, but there is still plenty of cause for alarm.

Pew led with an apparent bombshell:
“In fact, nearly seven-in-10 Catholics (69%) say they personally believe that during Catholic Mass, the bread and wine used in Communion ‘are symbols of the body and blood of Jesus Christ.’ Just one-third of U.S. Catholics (31%) say they believe that ‘during Catholic Mass, the bread and wine actually become the Body and Blood of Jesus.’”
4 Myths About Marriage from Marriage Today from Marriage Today by Dave Willis
I recently had the privilege of officiating the wedding of two friends from church. At their reception, they had a table where friends and relatives could write their “best marriage advice” and leave it for the newlyweds...
How the Rise in Unreligious Americans affects Sex and Marriage: Comparative Evidence from New Survey Data August 28, 2019 By Mark Regnerus
Permissive sexual attitudes and practices have not stimulated the religious revival many Christians believe the extremes of Sexual Revolution will inspire. There is no evidence of it in the data. On the contrary: Christians seem to grow more complicit—or at least more quiet about their misgivings—by the year.
The Five Essential Elements of Good Communication from Marriage Today by Jimmy Evans
Think back to the period of time when you and your spouse were falling in love with each other. You spent hour after hour together. You discovered you were attracted to each other. But perhaps the most critical part of that process involved words....
How Kids Change Dad
Family Is Written in Our Bodies and Brains from Break Point

The many ways that a woman's biology changes when she becomes pregnant are obvious. Having a child changes a woman mentally and physically. What many people often do not think about is the many ways that having a baby also changes a father. 

Not only does a man's mental state change when he becomes a father, but his body goes through some biological shifts, optimizing his abilities as a father. In an article  by the New York Times, anthropologist Dr. Anna Machin discusses these changes. She reports that after the birth of his first child, a father's body experiences a dip in testosterone. Not only does this drop in testosterone encourage the father to focus inward and protect his wife and child, it is also believed to trigger the release of the important bonding hormones oxytocin and dopamine. Unlike in women, these hormones peak when fathers are spending quality time playing with their children. In mothers, oxytocin and dopamine peak when they are nurturing.

There are also observable differences occurring in the brain. Machin writes: "For moms, regions closer to the core of the brain which enable them to care, nurture and detect risk were most active. But for dads, the parts that shone most brightly were located on the outer surface of the brain, where higher, more conscious cognitive functions sit, such as thought, goal orientation, planning and problem solving."

To listen to a podcast about how having kids changes men, click  HERE
25 Things Husbands Should Start Doing from Family Life
Have you ever thought, Dang, I just don’t get her? You’re frustrated at your wife’s frustration with you. It’s hard to measure up as a husband! Deep down, you desire to please her. But you don’t know where to start.
The Purpose for Your Marriage
from Marriage Today by Jimmy Evans
When I talk to couples about marriage, I often ask them a couple of questions. The first is Did God put you together? Almost every couple says yes. 
Then I ask them Why did God put you together? Typically, they return a blank stare. Karen and I were like that. We believed God put us together and made us for each other. But we didn't know why. 
I believe understanding God's purpose for your marriage is vital to a successful, fulfilling relationship. Here are a few facts you should know:
1. You will not be the same in five years —as individuals and as a couple. You may be better or worse, but you won't be the same. Think of the couples you know whose lives have imploded over the past five years, or who have experienced the greatest years of their lives. People change.
2. Success happens on purpose and never by accident.  You won't wake up five years from now and say, "Honey, we never talk or spend time together, and we never work at it, but isn't our marriage fabulous?" That's not how it works.
3. In marriage, success only happens if you're both in agreement and committed to the same purpose . There are two of you. Amos 3:3 asks "Do two walk together unless they have agreed to do so?" The answer, of course, is NO. You can't walk together if you don't first agree.
Marriage is the longest journey you'll take in life, but are you and your spouse walking in agreement? Do you know why God put you together? Do you know the purpose for your marriage? Those are big questions, which leads us to...
4. To find the purpose for your marriage, you have to start with the big questions.  A few years ago, there was a national, secular poll that asked people what they would ask God if they could ask Him just one question. The number-one response was Why am I here?
We want and need to know our purpose. In Matthew 22, Jesus gives us the answer: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'" (Matt. 22:37–39) 
The answer to our questions of purpose is love. That's life's universal purpose. When we ask God why we are here, His answer to us is "Relationship. You're here for a relationship with me and with each other." 
Relationships are why we exist, but the devil is the enemy of relationships. A strong marriage is a threat to Him. He is always trying to divide us, trying to get us to substitute things for our children, for our marriage, for God, for the things that matter. He wants us to chase after things that won't last. 
That's what happened with Adam and Eve. The devil separated them from God, separated them from each other, and convinced them that something would make them happier than someone.
Separation and substitution: those are his methods, and they never change. 
Don't let those methods take hold in your marriage. Work at it. Pursue God's plan for your lives together. That plan is to love Him and love people, especially your family. We are created for God and for relationships. That's our purpose.
Want to save Shipping costs?
The USPS offers a reduced rate for mailing packages with workbooks, manuals, etc. called "Media Mail."

Media Mail  is a cost-effective way to send non time sensitive media  materials through the U.S. Postal Service as long as the package weighs less than 70 pounds. This method will take longer to arrive, within in 8 to 10 days. So if you would like to use the media mail option (it can save as much as half the regular cost), in the lower left hand corner of the Material Order Form, in the box titled "Order Placed By", put your name and "Media Mail".
Thank you for your commitment to forming couples for the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony.
Have questions, or ideas for up-coming newsletters, please let us know. You can contact Chris at ccodden@gw.stcdio.org or Jill at jill.svihel@gw.stcdio.org or call the office at (320) 258-7611.