Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington

From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302

Retrouvaille program names Inland Northwest leadership; weekends designed to help struggling couples

the Inland Register

(From the July 18, 2013 edition of the Inland Register)

Don and Sherry Morrison are the new Spokane coordinators for the Retrouvaille program. (IR photo courtesy of Retrouvaille)

Last month, Don and Sherry Morrison were elected Spokane Coordinators for Inland Northwest Retrouvaille, the highly successful program designed to help married couples with relationship challenges.

“If you feel alone in your marriage, if you are trying to recover from infidelity or a breach of trust, even if you are already divorced or separated, Retrouvaille is here to help,” said Don Morrison. “Retrouvaille provides tools to help couples heal, reconnect, and let go of past hurts. The program is completely confidential, and no one in the program is required to share with the group. Each couple is provided the tools to improve their relationship by communicating with one another, in a supportive, non-judgmental, spiritual environment.”

The program known as Retrouvaille – French for “rediscovery” – began in Quebec in 1977 and has since spread through the U.S.A., South America, Europe, India and South Africa. Retrouvaille has conducted marriage weekends in the Inland Northwest for over 20 years.

Retrouvaille isn’t a traditional retreat, counseling session, or Marriage Encounter weekend. Rather, Retrouvaille combines elements of all of these formats to present a unique program that has a proven record of success in helping marriages thrive. The program is designed to help heal and renew marriages that are facing challenges. The program can be of help to couples who are separated or even divorced.

The program includes not only the initial, intensive weekend retreat, but a series of post-weekend sessions where couples learn and implement principles for conflict resolution, forgiveness, understanding, and communication, as well as long-term support groups to help couples continue to grow in marriage and foster community.

Retrouvaille weekends are held locally four times a year, typically in Spokane and Richland, Wash., and Boise and Cottonwood, Idaho. Many couples located in the Spokane area find it is more than worth the drive to attend the Tri-Cities or Idaho weekend, and for those who would otherwise need to travel long distances, Retrouvaille provides resources for couples to experience the post-weekend sessions online.

The weekends are conducted by three couples who have attended previous weekends, and a priest. Although the program includes space for reflection on spiritual growth and the meaning of marriage in a Christian context, it welcomes couples of all faiths and nonbelievers. The goal of Retrouvaille is solely to save and improve marriages.

As divorce rates climb, and the percentage of married couples declines, it becomes harder to find friends and communities that support marriage. Retrouvaille aims to provide the resources and support for married couples that are often absent in today’s society.

All inquiries for registration for the weekends are confidential, and no couple will ever be denied an opportunity to heal their marriage because of financial circumstances.

Retrouvaille Weekends are scheduled for Sept. 13-15 in Spokane and Sept. 20-22 in Cottonwood, Idaho. For more information, call 800-470-2230 or visit the web site:

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