Programs for Re-Married and Civilly Married Couples

In response to our Holy Father's call in his latest teaching The Joy of Love, for the Church to accompany couples in their journey toward Catholic Matrimony, the Family Life Office is making available marriage preparation offerings for couples who are preparing for Catholic Marriage  who, for one reason or another, entered into secular marriage, or are divorced/annulled or widowed and are preparing for the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony.  The two marriage preparation programs we offer which are most suitable for the needs of such couples are PICTURE OF LOVE (primary program), and NEW LIFE (supplemental program for remarriage).

Picture of Love 

Marriage Prep for Civilly Married Couples Preparing for Catholic Marriage 

(formerly Convalidation Weekend)

Picture of Love Marriage Preparation is a primary marriage prep program for couples who are preparing for marriage in the Catholic Church after a secular (civil) marriage.   It is also for couples preparing for Catholic marriage who have been living as husband and wife for 5+ years and have children.  The program is held usually on a Friday night and all day Saturday.   Topics covered in this program include:

  • Sacrament of Matrimony
  • Family of Origin
  • Communication
  • Finances
  • Marriage Intimacy
  • Natural Family Planning
  • Parenting and Family Life
  • Spirituality & Holiness Family Style

The program is hosted at different parishes throughout the year and is presented by "team couples" who are part of the host parish's marriage prep team.  This program is part of an overall marriage preparation plan taking place at every couple's home parish.    Couples preparing for marriage in the Catholic Church, who meet basic eligibility requirements may attend.  Please see the basic eligibility requirements below.


  1. Couples who attend this program must be working with a priest, deacon or lay marriage prep minister at a parish church and have been found to be free to marry in the Catholic Church.  This typically means the couple has had their initial interview with their marriage minister.
  2. Administration and review of a pre-marriage inventory, such as FOCCUS, PREPARE-ENRICH, PMI or other,  is highly recommended prior to attending this program.
  3. Couples attending this program may be civilly married for any amount of time.  It is our recommendation however that young couples married civilly for less than two years attend an Engaged Encounter Weekend instead of this program if possible.
  4. Another eligible group includes couples who have been living together as husband and wife for 5+ years and have children.
  5. A clergy recommendation is still required as part of the application process.

PLEASE NOTE:  Applying does not guarantee a spot in the program.  SPACE IS LIMITED.  A confirmation letter is the guarantee that a spot has been reserved for you.   PLEASE CHECK PROGRAM STATUS BELOW BEFORE MAILING IN YOUR APPLICATION.

Cost for this program is $125 per couple


Please note that some parishes utilize a paper registration form that must be sent directly to the parish hosting the program while others have online registration.  

  • February 22-23, 2019 @ St. Helen, Pearland - REG IS CLOSED
  • March 22-23, 2019 @ Christ the Redeemer, Houston REG IS CLOSED 
  • July 19-20, 2019 @ St. Ignatius of Loyola, Spring ONLINE REG

Please mail applications to the address indicated on the form for your program date.  For questions regarding these retreats, please contact the person/location handling your registration. The Family Life Office cannot confirm registrations for programs when the parish is handling registrations.


New Life

The New Life program is a supplemental one day program for couples considering marriage where one or both are divorced/annulled, where one or both are widows,  or one or both are bringing children into a new marriage from a previous relationship. 

New Life takes place on a Saturday from 8:30 AM to 6:30 PM at Cameron Retreat Center. You will receive a certificate of attendance at the end of the day.   If you need additional information, please send us an email.

PLEASE NOTE:  Couples registering for New Life must also be registered or taking their PRIMARY MARRIAGE PREPARATION PROGRAM either at the parish or an archdiocesan sponsored program.

The fee for this program is $75 per couple.  To download and print the registration form, please click HERE

  • February 23, 2019 REG. CLOSED
  • April 6, 2019  REG. CLOSED 
  • June 22, 2019 OPEN

New Life Retreat

The New Life Retreat is a marriage formation program focusing on the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony and the skills necessary for successful Christian marriage. The program was designed for couples who must address the unique dynamics of creating a blended or step-family.  

The retreat includes one overnight stay at  Cameron Retreat CenterIt begins on Friday at 5 pm and concludes on Saturday at 6:30 pm.   If you need additional information, please send us an email.

The New Life Retreat is considered a PRIMARY marriage preparation program when taken as part of the formal marriage formation process at a parish. 

Eligible couples include:

1. Couples who are in the formal stages of marriage preparation (working with clergy at a parish) who are divorced but have been found to be free to marry in the Catholic Church after a Declaration of Nullity.

2. Widows who are considering or are formally preparing to enter Catholic marriage

3. Couples who are marrying for the first time, but where one or both have children from previous serious relationships

4. Divorced or widowed couples who are exploring Catholic marriage but haven't started the formal process and are seeking marriage education  

Retreat Date:

August 2-3, 2019

The fee is $125 per couple.  It includes retreat material, meals (dinner on Friday, breakfast, lunch, and snack on Saturday) and  one overnight stay at Cameron Retreat Center. 


On-line registration COMING SOON!