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Document Details :
Title: Ehevorbereitung als Aufgabe der Jugendpastoral?
Subtitle: Lernen in Beziehung Person zu werden
Author(s): GÄRTNER, Stefan
Journal: Marriage, Families & Spirituality
Volume: 16 Issue: 1 Date: 2010
Can pastoral ministry provide young persons with the foundation they need to enter into Christian marriage as adults? The article treats various aspects of this question and offers a strategy for marriage preparation. It begins by highlighting typical difficulties and challenges for married couples in late modernity. One concerns the tension that exists between Church teachings and the way these are understood by young people as well as their parents. This tension is illustrated by reference to youth ministry experience in Germany. The article then considers the particular situation and changed social context of young people in an individualized society. Currently, youth are forced to make individual choices about relationships at a young age when marriage is not a realistic option. Helping young people to grow into persons who can make reasonable choices is an important goal in youth ministry. In such a context the Christian commandment of love is an important message that can give clear direction to pastoral care in the midst of the pluralistic thinking about matrimony typical of our late modern society. Thus, the teachings of the Church can become relevant in the lives of young people. The last paragraph shows how youth ministry can concretely utilize this concept. It proposes the strategy of a 'personal offer' as a key principle in youth ministry: a process of learning by the credible example of others who are important to them. In this way, young people can develop mature personalities and can enter into relationships which are truly based on Christian values.