Loving for Life start for Norfolk couple
Many couples are, like Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge thinking about their big day this spring. But one Norfolk couple have taken time out to consider the reasons they are actually getting married. Barbara Bryant reports.
Wedding dress, flowers, photographer, reception venue, hymns, bridesmaids, best man, relatives, readings, transport.... it’s easy to get caught up in the arrangements for the big day and forget the reason you’re getting married.
Will and Becci (pictured) attended a Loving for Life workshop, to take a few hours out to look at their relationship. The workshop was run by facilitators from Mothers’ Union Norwich Diocese, for couples getting married at their church in Taverham and started with a meal then a few fun exercises and conversation starters.
“We both thoroughly enjoyed the evening, especially the warm welcome and friendly atmosphere”, said Will.
“We found the course useful as an opportunity to meet with other couples and discuss wedding plans and progress towards the big day,” said Becci. “We were able to discuss subjects we had not necessarily thought about before in a supportive environment.”
“We would certainly recommend the course to other engaged couples,” added Will.
Loving for Life is just one of the ways Mothers’ Union Norwich Diocese lives out the value it places on marriage and family life. Across Norfolk and part of Suffolk, there are over 1,000 members, many of whom volunteer in their parishes and beyond.
Recently described as “a power house of prayer” by its Patron, the Bishop of Norwich, the members’ active faith permeates all that they do. Recent visitors to the Wedding Show at Norfolk Showground were delighted to tie prayer cards with their names on to a tree and have members offer prayers for them in the run-up to their wedding and on their wedding day. Regular retreats and prayers for practical projects and initiatives around both in Norfolk and around the world enable members to reach out in love to others.
Branches offer fellowship to anyone in their local area whether they have an active Christian faith or not. One new member described how she had struggled to get out of the house socialising again after a long-term illness: “The kindness and gentle hand of friendship that has been offered to me has helped beyond measure.”
The Mothers’ Union Children’s Projects Network runs toddler groups, pram services and drop-ins across the county welcoming parents and carers and their children. A recent service and picnic at the Cathedral during National Families Week was a first and offered a celebration of family life.
All members fundraise for projects supporting family life and disaster relief in diocese worldwide, along with providing holidays for families under stress just down the road in Caister