Orange Conference 2017- Breakout Notes
THE MARRIEDPEOPLE STRATEGY: WHYS AND HOWS
Thursday, April 27th 10:45 -11:45am
Speakers: Ted Lowe, Heather Matarazzo, and Josh Fortney

I. APPROACHES TO MARRIAGE MINISTRY THAT FALL SHORT

  • THE HANDS-OFF APPROACH: Many churches do little to help marriages because of the pace of ministry or because they don’t feel a need.
  • THE TOPICAL APPROACH: Some churches view marriage as a topic to be covered, so they address it through various “one-offs”—a sermon series, a study, an event, or a book.
  • THE REACTIONARY APPROACH: Other churches spend time and resources on marriage, but they focus solely on couples in crisis—in essence, waiting until marriages are in trouble before offering help, rather than taking a proactive approach that could help couples avoid crisis in the first place.

II. A PROACTIVE, STRATEGIC APPROACH

  • A PROACTIVE APPROACH: A proactive approach—a strategy—is more effective than a topical or reactionary approach.
  • PARADIGM SHIFTS: Changing from one of these historical marriage ministry approaches to a proactive approach requires some paradigm shifts. It requires moving:
  1. From an intervention to prevention
    Intervention is emotional and the results are measurable.
    Prevention is neither—but is far superior.
  2. From children’s ministry to family ministry
  3. From isolation to relationship
  4. From information to experience
  5. From feminine to feminine and masculine
  6. From general to focused
  7. From programs to process
  • THE MARRIEDPEOPLE STRATEGY: Because marriage is a process, the MarriedPeople Strategy is designed to encourage and empower couples on a consistent basis––no matter where they are in their marriages. This shift is what makes MarriedPeople a proactive approach, not a topical or reactionary one. It leverages three environments to reach couples:Individual Couple Experiences (dates and monthly emails designed to help couples connect)
    Small Group Experiences (community, accountability, faith building)
    Larger Group Experiences (vision casting, outreach, inspiration)

III. GET STARTED: PRACTICAL OPTIONS LEADERS CAN IMPLEMENT IMMEDIATELY

Ted Lowe is a speaker and the director of MarriedPeople, the marriage division at Orange. Ted is the author of two books—one for marriage ministry leaders (Married People: How Your Church Can Build Marriages That Last) and one for married couples (Your Best US: Marriage Is Easier Than You Think). He served for almost 10 years as the director of MarriedLife at North Point Community Church. He lives near Atlanta, Georgia, with his four favorite people: his wife, Nancie, and their three children.

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