With every couple indicating they have more passion for their marriage after the weekend, the fully booked and popular marriage retreat was a success. Hosted by the family ministry department of the North New Zealand Conference (NNZC),  twelve couples enjoyed the tranquil setting of the Coromandel.

Enjoying the top-quality accommodation of Flaxmill, an idyllic and romantic location proved the perfect location for couples to grow closer together.  Being able to enjoy delicious food and not having to cook, provided more downtime for the couples, which was enjoyed at the beach, hiking the many tracks, paddle boarding and kayaking.

The foundation of the weekend was, according to NNZC family ministry leader pastor Dale Hokin, to “help couples see how much God is present to transform our marriages into something that reflects his love and passion for us”.

Pastor Dale Hokin alongside his wife Mrs Anneli Hokin shared ideas and tools of how to enrich a marriage. According to Pr Hokin, some of the ideas the participants found helpful were; “Ideas such as to seek to know [my partner] and understand [them] as opposed to [trying to] correct or change [them].” And “The importance of making lots of “bids” for positive connection, and to welcome them enthusiastically by “turning towards”.

The retreat enabled couples to grow closer together. Some of the feedback included couples realising that they had just been going through the motions, now after the retreat, they felt there is a whole new level to get to. Couples also appreciated the time spent alone together as well as with like-minded couples which recharged them. One couple summed it up in the evaluation forms “This retreat has been a real blessing for our marriage, and we both felt truly spoilt and have a closer connection with each other.”

Respecting privacy, no photos or names are shared.

Kirsten Oster Lundqvist NNZC Communication and Media officer with Pr Dale Hokin, NNZC Family and Children ministry leader

Photos from retreat by Dale Hokin