A brief history...

A not-so-brief history...

In 1974, divorce rates were skyrocketing. In response to this alarming trend, the Marriage Encounter Resource Community turned their attention to marriage preparation. The first weekend was presented in 1975 in Detroit and the response was immediate. By the end of that year more than 100 couples and 50 priests were trained to give weekends throughout the United States. A lay ministry was born!

37 couples and several priests from dioceses all over the U.S. attended the initial workshop in Kansas City, MS. At this workshop the original outline was prepared. The first national EE convention was held that summer in Pittsburg. From these humble beginnings, Catholic Engaged Encounter has grown to be an international organization that serves thousands of couples each year. The 25th National EE Convention was held back in Pittsburgh in honor of the first convention. Almost a thousand people attended the event!

The National Organization of Catholic Engaged Encounter strives to be a truly national family. We have an established structure, which sustains local communities and reaches out to new areas in this country and around the world. The United States national family consists of an Executive Team who directs the activities of the United States National Board. This Board consists of teams that represent the five US districts. These five districts correspond to the five geographical regions: Northeast, Midwest, South, North Central States, and the West. For more information about Catholic Engaged Encounter in other areas, visit our national website

Recognition from the Experts:

Catholic Engaged Encounter has won recognition from the National Association of Catholic Family Ministers (NACFLM) with the "Outstanding Organization in Family Life Ministries" award. 

"Your members have worked tirelessly to provide training, outlines and resources for this important ministry. Your presence in many dioceses throughout the United States is a testimony to the impact that you have had on new families. The CARA study and evaluation of Catholic Engaged Encounter speaks of the value and importance of this ministry for the Catholic Church and other denominations."
"Engaged Encounter is the best marriage preparation program in communication for engaged couples of any denomination in the U.S." Michael J. McManus, author of the book,"

               —"Marriage Savers", syndicated columnist in 100 newspapers and radio                     commentator.

"We believe that Engaged Encounter is an opportunity for engaged couples to truly connect with one another on important topics and issues without being distracted by daily life."

              — Sheri & Bob Stritof, authors of "The Everything Great Marriage                               Book",and The Marriage Guides.