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Civil Marriage Initiative: Sacramental Marriage Formation for Couples in Civil Unions

The Civil Marriage Initiative by Witness to Love is a comprehensive, revolutionary, nationally-researched and collaborative project. This project equips parishes and dioceses who desire to seek out, support, and inspire couples in civil unions to pursue transformative sacramental marriage formation.

Ryan and Mary Rose Verret

Witness to Love is a virtues-based, Catechumenate model of marriage renewal and preparation that integrates modern principles of psychology and the virtues to help couples facilitate an authentic dialogue about their relationship.

Mary-Rose & Ryan Verret are the co-founders of Witness to Love and the authors of Witness to Love: How to Help the Next Generation Build Marriages that Survive and Thrive. Together Ryan and Mary-Rose speak on issues regarding evangelization, marriage, and disciples-hip. In June 2021 the Verrets were invited by the Vatican to present at the International Forum: Where do we stand with Amoris Laetitia? – on the impact of men-tor couples in evangelization. They are frequent guests on Catholic TV and radio and they reside in the heart of Cajun Country in Louisiana with their five children. Their passion is teaching couples to share their marriage with others and to understand that their home is a missionary outpost of the local parish.


Sample Interview Questions:

1.)  Can you briefly tell our listeners about Witness to Love – what it is, how your ministry came to be, and why you felt compelled to make this your life’s work?

2.)  How does authentic accompaniment make Witness to Love so unique?

3.)  What kind of data and statistics have you collected that support the effectiveness of Witness to Love at the parish level?

4.)  How is your newest initiative for the civilly married meeting a need in the Church that has never before been met?

5.)  How does a parish get started with your program?  How can interested individuals go through your program?


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Download Sample Interview Questions

Press and Testimonies:

Yes, I want to say that this process is in the heart of the New Evangelization. I have seen couples enter into this process and their mentors walk together having fun while finding the essence of marriage who is Jesus Christ. Mary Rose and Ryan have not only made marriage preparation fun for all including the priest, but has created an environment by which Christ is rediscovered.

-Fr Ryan Adams, Shrine of the Little Flower, Archdiocese of Detroit


I believe that Witness to Love is a fruit of the Holy Spirit’s renewal of the Church and the world. It is a response to the need of encouraging and cultivating a genuine, lived Catholic culture on the parish level through rooting Catholic couples in the Sacramental life of the Church and the “apprenticeship of marriage” via mentor couples that they already have a connection to. The mentor couples walk away challenged, encouraged, and renewed in their desire to live their Vocation of Marriage more deeply rooted in the Church and their local community. It has certainly been an answer to specific prayers I prayed for the renewal and deepening of marriage prep and marriage enrichment for Catholics. Why did God choose Mary Rose and Ryan for this task? I don’t know, but I am sure glad that they said “yes.” If you want to help form solid, Catholic marriages then say yes to Witness to Love.

Fr. Andrew Merrick,  Vocation Director, Diocese of Baton Rouge; Pastor, Christ the King Parish and Student Center (LSU).


Witness to Love holds out great promise for strengthening marriage and family life in our parishes. 

Salvatore Cordileone, Archbishop of San Francisco


For more ‘media mentions’, visit Witness to Love’s Newsroom here.