Couples Reaffirm Marital Commitment

Published August 30, 1990. I don’t know what you were doing Sunday evening. If you are like most people in this area, you probably spent part of Sunday in church services. Perhaps you visited family or friends. Some may have spent part of the day in the mountains camping or fishing. After 6 p.m. you probably watched television. But I know what about 200 people in Salt Lake City did Sunday evening. They met in Victor and Lois Cline’s back yard in recognition of the importance of marriage.

Vic called me about two months ago and asked me if I would come and speak to a group about marriage. I asked him where, how many would attend and when? He said it would be Aug. 26 at 7:30 p.m. in his back yard. Afterward there would be refreshments. They expected 100-200 people.

At first, I was hesitant. Not that I didn’t want to go to the meeting. I had previously been on the speaking circuit in California with Vic and had spent time with him talking about his involvement with marriage enrichment. Many of us know Vic best as Dr. Victor Cline, psychologist at the University of Utah who is nationally recognized, among other things, for his work on the dangers and abuses of pornography. What many people do not know about Vic and Lois Cline is their interest and work to help improve marital relationships.

When he first asked me to speak I had visions of talking to 15 or 20 people about marriage as they munched on hot dogs and hamburgers in the Clines’ back yard. But Vic assured me it was more than an evening picnic. People who have attended the marriage enrichment workshops meet periodically to renew their commitment to marriage and to each other. The format for the evening looked interesting, so I agreed to go and speak.

When I arrived at the Cline home, there were 200 chairs (borrowed, he confided, from his local LDS ward) in the Clines’ spacious back yard, a large speaking system, and several long tables covered with a variety of treats and snacks provided mostly by the guest who came. It was a beautiful evening for a rare occasion. More than 100 couples came to recognize once again the importance of marriage in their life.

Before the program began I told Vic there was only one major problem with his program on marriage enrichment. It’s much too small. He answered, partly in jest, that he first is interested in quality, then quantity. With all the marital turmoil and disruption today, I told him we need 20 more programs like his right now in this state. Married couples want and need the support of others who are similarly committed to marriage.

For 45 minutes I did my best to talk about something I felt they already knew and believed. Someone once said it is sometimes better to be reminded than informed, and that is what I felt I was doing.

Hopefully those gathered got something out of my few remarks. As I drove home Sunday night I realized that I had received far more than I had given. I had met with many couples who not only value marriage but are engaged in activities designed to help make their marriage more worthwhile.

Vic, Lois and guests, keep up the good work. Marriage is worthwhile. The evening was enjoyable.

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