No strings, no rings

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					16   Canadian Mennonite February 22, 2010




 No strings,
 no rings
 Cohabitation before marriage
 impedes the permanency
 of future relationships
 Story and Photo
 by R achel Bergen
 national Correspondent
 WinniPeg


 R     ecent evidence proves that living
       together before marriage reduces
 the likelihood that a marriage will survive,
                                                    Irma Fast Dueck leads a group of Church in Ministry Seminar attendees in discus-
                                                    sion about cohabitation before marriage at Canadian Mennonite University earlier
 despite popular belief to the contrary.            this year.
    This was one of the messages discussed at
 a workshop that was part of the Canadian           • Cautious cohabitation—where the               partners’ attitudes towards marriage and
 Mennonite University (CMU) Church                  couple is more serious about the future and     may “reinforce the belief that all intimate
 in Ministry Seminar, “Mapping the way:             is tentatively moving towards marriage;         relationships are fragile and transient.”
 Finding pathways through challenging               • Committed cohabitation—where                     “There is something deeply Christian
 issues.” The subject of this year’s seminar        the couple expects to get married but           about marriage and two people becoming
 was cohabitation before marriage and its           haven’t yet, due to such matters as finan-      one flesh,” she said. Marriage also encom-
 social and spiritual implications. The work-       cial issues; and                                passes a covenant and a community of be-
 shop was led by Irma Fast Dueck, a CMU             • Alternative cohabitation—where                lievers who enter into the covenant with the
 professor of practical theology for both           the couple is taking a radical stance against   couple, to help them. However, this belief
 undergraduate and graduate programs.               marriage.                                       appears to be dwindling in the current popu-
    A cohabiting couple is defined as “a co-resi-       According to Adrian Thatcher in his         lation, Fast Dueck shared. Christian beliefs,
 dent man and woman, living together within         book Living Together and Christian Ethics,      she said, are “like a ship sailing in the shallow
 a sexual union, without that union having          cohabiters are more likely to return to         waters of modernity, throwing ca
				
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Description: "There is something deeply Christian about marriage and two people becoming one flesh," she said. Marriage also encompasses a covenant and a community of believers who enter into the covenant with the couple, to help them. However, this belief appears to be dwindling in the current population, [Irma Fast Dueck] shared. Christian beliefs, she said, are "like a ship sailing in the shallow waters of modernity, throwing cargo off to stay afloat, but soon there is nothing left."
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