To me, the most romantic words in the world aren’t simply “Will you marry me?” I’d add: “…and start a Pre-Cana course right away?”
Okay, for those of you who weren’t raised as Roman Catholics, let me backtrack. You see, although we of Team Bartilucci are native New Yorkers, we’ve lived in northeastern Pennyslvania since 2001. But we still watch the New York-based morning show GoodDay New York (GDNY)—even more so since one of our favorite TV personalities, Dave Price, recently returned to the show as co-anchor with Rosanna Scotto.
This morning, while Vinnie and I prepared for the day ahead, our genial co-hosts were interviewing guest Vikki Ziegler, Esq., high-profile matrimonial lawyer and author of The Pre-Marital Planner (from Imagine, a Charlesbridge Imprint). Not to put the whammy on it, but Vinnie and I have been a happy couple since we met in 1985, and a happily-married couple since 1989, so it was refreshing to find that Ms. Ziegler’s book was about keeping couples happy and thriving together with refreshingly sensible advice—no small feat, considering almost 50% of marriages end in divorce. Having come from a family of much-married people, I was intrigued to hear how Ms. Ziegler had succeeded when so many others haven’t.Here's a link to the video.
|It's an asphalt jungle out there for |
couples who don't plan their future well!
Would you believe the secret of Ms. Ziegler’s success is to plan ahead and be honest with yourself and your beloved about pretty much every aspect of your life? You know—good old common sense! She’s big on talking wisely about every crucial pre-marital concern, from whether or not to have kids, to being honest with yourself and your beloved about your finances, and more. It might not sound romantic, but let’s face it, everyone has to eat and pay bills, no matter how much in love you are.
I knew Ms. Ziegler was on the right track when she brought up a subject Vinnie and I have been touting to every young couple I’ve known who wanted to jump the broom: a Pre-Cana! Vinnie can vouch for me cheering and hooting and hollering! This rite originated with Catholic couples, but I’ve known others who found Pre-Cana-style courses helpful, too (as you’ll see shortly). The name comes from John 2:1 and the wedding feast in Galilee, where Jesus turned water into wine. Catholic couples are required to take six-week course before they can be married in a Catholic church. A priest or deacon leads six weekly sessions with support from another married Catholic couple.Some couples even do online programs, like when one of the affianced must be deployed overseas (damn war!).
But the cool
thing about the Pre-Cana is that even if you’re not Catholic or at all
religious, the topics discussed are helpful and sensible for pretty much
anyone. In addition to faith, here are
the topics that the United States Conference of Catholic
Bishops consider as “must-have conversations” before couples get
- Conflict Resolution Skills
|Vikki Ziegler shows brides-to-be how to |
make marriage go swimmingly!