Recently Smart Stepfamilies president Ron L. Deal was invited by Christianity Today magazine to write a feature article on why the church must minister to remarried couples. The article appeared in the October, 2007 issue. Read it on CT's site.
Even though 40% of all weddings are remarriages and over 60% of remarriage divorce, redivorce prevention is only occasionally mentioned in the marriage education movement and literature, is rarely the focus of keynote presentations at marriage and family conferences, and receives very little attention in the media. Why?
How does stepfamily ministry fit into family life ministry in general? What role should the church take in ministering to all types of families? Whether you're just getting started or have an existing ministry, this philosophy of family ministry can help clarify the road ahead.
Many couples and ministry leaders are asking, "How do we get started? We want to impact the stepfamilies and single-parents in our church and community, but we don't know where to begin." This article will walk you through the process.
Nearly one-third of US weddings today give birth to a stepfamily.By the year 2010 there will be more stepfamilies in America than any other type of family and it is predicted that one-half of Americans will have a steprelationship at some point in their lifetime.Yet, despite the prevalence of remarried couples and the unique struggles they face, counseling for pre-stepfamily couples is generally conducted in the same way as for those entering a first marriage.This article asserts that adequate pre-remarital counseling must be different in content and practice in order for it to prepare couples for the realities of stepfamily life.
Separation and divorce are a fact of the twenty-first century, whether we want to admit it or not.While the church would like to think that every marriage will succeed and the married couple will live happily ever after, statistics do not bear this out to be the case.
From marriage expert Scott Stanley, this article explores the issues around men and commitment. Differences between how men and women development marital commitment are examined. From the Smart Marriages website.
Stepfamilies have key tasks they must manage to further their integration over time. This chart outlines key tasks and examines stepfamilies with differing starting points: Following divorce, death, or an out-of-wedlock pregnancy.
This plenary presentation was delivered by Ron on August 12, 2005 at the second annual Association of Marriage & Family Ministries conference in Phoenix, Arizona. The presentation challenges church leaders to mature their family ministry practice in a number of specific ways. It also challenges the church to more fully integrate family life ministry into the overall ministry philosophy of the local church. There was tremendous response to this presentation at the conference; we believe you, too, will be blessed by what Ron has to say.
The Continuum of Care is a developmental model for understanding the scope and sequence of stepfamily ministry. The model provides a panoramic view of the key events and processes that are involved in the development and ongoing life of stepfamilies...
"Before we attended the Building a Successful Stepfamily conference Jared and I had an idea of the best way to "blend" him into our family. We came to the seminar with a time table of how quickly our family should become a family. Your seminar has taken the pressure, stress, and anxiety off of us. There are no words to express the gratitude my fiancé and I have for you and your ministry...Thank you for everything!"
Melissa & Jared (Georgia)
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