Local church helping married couples thrive

Published 10:35 pm Saturday, April 9, 2016

Family, faith and the future are topics that are going to be discussed at one local church this weekend to strengthen marriages and family relationships.

The Thrive Marriage and Parenting Conference will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday and from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday at First Baptist Church Vicksburg, 1607 Cherry St.

Student pastor Josh Gee said many couples in the church were asking a number of marriage and parenting questions so the staff chose to create a conference for the congregation and the community. This is the first time the church has offered the conference.

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“Basically its just couples and parents who are looking for tips and advice on how to enrich or better their marriages and how to be better parents,” Gee said.

The church staff thought if their church members were having these type questions, probably other couples and parents were asking the same questions and looking for help. The conference is open to the public.

“Some of this stuff is designed simply for marriages such as how to change your focus — how if you focus more on your relationship with Christ, with God, as a couple that it will actually improve your marriage,” Gee said.

He said communication and listening skills are topics that will be covered in the sessions focused on marriage. The parenting centered session emphasize family devotion and prayer, managing family time, keeping children safe digitally, raising Godly children and even sex.

“We’re trying to hit all the different topics that we’ve had people that have thrown out question, or are just looking for advice on and basically brought in some different speakers that would be good talking on these topics,” Gee said.

A few topics that will be covered don’t necessarily fit in the just a parenting or marriage box, like setting boundaries, which centers on building relationships within extended family, or finances and planning for the future with a representative from Edward Jones.

“We’re trying to cover a broad spectrum,” Gee said.

The Friday night meeting begins with a large assembly session and will break up into three small groups participants chose from— Change Your Focus with Chris Webb, Family Devotion and Prayer with Clint Richie or Finances and Planning for the Future with Dan Daily.

The Saturday itinerary is planned similarly with a main session followed by two break out sessions over two hours. The 10 a.m. sessions to choose from are Speak Life with Chris Webb, Managing Your Family Time with Fish Robinson, Keeping Your Child Safe in a Digital World with Kenny Stanteen and Raising Boys to be Godly Men with Kent and Gail Campbell.

The 11 a.m. Sessions to choose from are 1-2-3 Magic for Christian Parents (Discipline) with Chris Webb, Talking to Kids About Sex with Fish Robinson, Raising Girls in a Diva World with Debbie Freeman and Amy Robinson and Setting Boundaries in Family Relationships with Shellie Matthews.

“Really the design behind it is how to strengthen your family and your marriage,” Gee said.

The keynote speaker for the large sessions is Clint Richie, the pastor of First Baptist Church Yazoo City. Tickets for the conference are $20 per person or $30 for a couple. Lunch will also be served Saturday.

“We encourage anybody who wants to work on their marriage or their parenting skills or just wants to come for a good weekend to come on out,” Gee said.