Getting through the pain of divorce

In an ideal world men and women could follow the teaching of
Jesus, remaining married

until death do you part.

But our world is far from ideal: Couples find it necessary to
separate and divorce, and people need to cope with the painful
aftermath.
In an ideal world men and women could follow the teaching of Jesus, remaining married “until death do you part.”

But our world is far from ideal: Couples find it necessary to separate and divorce, and people need to cope with the painful aftermath.

At one time, religious institutions pressured members to remain married and treated them as outcasts if their marriages were dissolved.

Today most churches take a more charitable view and attempt to minister to the partners of a failed marriage.

The Health Ministries of Gilroy Presbyterian Church is sponsoring a local program which helps separated and divorced men and women learn to deal with the pain of the past and look forward to rebuilding their lives.

This program, DivorceCare, has equipped thousands of churches in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and New Zealand to provide spiritual solutions for those hurting from divorce.

South County residents are invited to this nondenominational series of seminars on 13 consecutive Thursdays from 7 to 9pm beginning Jan. 6. They will be held at 6000 Miller Avenue.

DivorceCare has proven to be effective because of its three distinctive elements:

n Each session features an expert on videotape addressing topics related to separation and divorce. Seminar topics include Facing Anger and Depression, New Relationships, Financial Survival, Forgiveness and Reconciliation.

n Afterwards, small groups discuss what’s going on in the lives of participants, becoming like friends and family as time passes.

n Between sessions participants will work with a notebook focusing on the weekly concepts with relevant Bible verses and other printed material, as well as recommendations for additional resources.

This balance of instruction and support has proven to be very effective in helping participants rebuild their lives.

Parents are encouraged to bring their children to each session, since they also need help in healing the pain caused by their parents’ divorce. Children 5 to 12 will meet in their own weekly sessions, called DC4K (DivorceCare for Kids), which combine games, story times, a workbook, DVD dramas, group discussions, music, crafts and snacks.

These sessions deal with topics like Journey from Anger to Sadness, Developing New Relationships, Financial Smarts and It’s Not My Fault. Thus parents and children can progress through the healing process together.

When Gilroy resident Julie Kiefer ‘s marriage ended, she discovered the DivorceCare program at San Jose’s Family Community Church.

After participating and reaching her own sense of closure, she went on to receive training and worked with the leadership of Gilroy Presbyterian to offer this ministry to South Country residents.

She saw firsthand the transformation “from anger and clenched fists to peace and open arms” and encourages divorced men and women to come and give this program a try.

There is no charge to participate (except for a suggested $15 for the workbook), and childcare for those younger than five is also provided.

For more information call

842-3000 or e-mail [email protected]

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