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Marriage enricher

Spanaway church holds seminar, evening gala

Marriage Does Matter is not counseling, but rather a celebration and inspiration for couples.

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Marriage is not always easy. Even the best of relationships are tested from time to time, from newlyweds to those who have reached their Golden Anniversary.

For married couples, singles contemplating marriage or newly engaged couples, Spoken Word Ministries in Spanaway is hosting a two-part event Saturday, May 23 that seeks to help enrich and enhance committed relationships.

Its third annual Marriage Does Matter event kicks off at 10 a.m. with a special seminar presented by Pastor Jack and Joyce Holt from River of Life Church in Kent.

"It's not for marriage counseling," said Ruby Hernandez, a military spouse and a member of the church who has attended the event previously. "It's something we do to enrich our marriage and apply biblical principles."

During the discussion, couples learn one of the most important aspects of a healthy relationship - how to communicate.

"We learned how to discuss and be more open with each other," said Hernandez, whose husband is a warrant officer on Joint Base Lewis-McChord. "We learned how to disagree with each other and know that it is okay to disagree ... how to allow each other to be upset but also hear one another. How to esteem one another and edify one another and not talk down to one another."

Later that evening, couples will get a chance to attend the Marriage Does Matter dinner and dance at the Best Western Premier Plaza Hotel and Conference Center in Puyallup.

The event will feature special presentations, dinner, dancing, games, prizes and a photo booth, and provides an opportunity for a well-deserved night out for couples, said Davina McIntosh, one of the event organizers. "We want to create an atmosphere of a date night, because some couples just don't have that," she said.

The Marriage Does Matter event was born several years ago and is based on the book Marriage Matters, which was written by Church Elder Tyrone Holcomb and introduced by Spoken Word Ministry founder and Pastor Darryl Simmons, a retired chief warrant officer, and his wife, April, a retired master sergeant. "He introduced it in the second year of our ministry, and from there we had our first Marriage Does Matter event," said McIntosh.

"It's really an enrichment for all areas," said Hernandez, who has been married for more than 15 years and has six children. "It doesn't just target married folks ... it's truly an enriching event. You not only learn stuff about yourself, but you open your mind to so many different avenues."

Marriage Does Matter, May 23. Seminar, 10 a.m. to noon at Spoken Word Ministry Church, 15413 First Avenue Court S. Bldg. H, Tacoma. Dinner dance, 5 to 9 p.m. at Best Western Premier Hotel, 620 S. Hill Park Drive in Puyallup. Cost is $60 for both events. For more information or to register, contact Davina McIntosh at 253.988.7646 or davina@jcswm.org. For more information about the ministry, visit www.jcswm.org or www.speakinglifedeveloper.org.

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