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 Just weeks after it was founded, the Diocesan Office of Marriage and Family Life held a high-profile event in collaboration with Office of Young Catholics emphasizing that formation in Catholic marriage takes place long before (and after) the formal engagement period.

 The Beloved Young Couples Conference took place on August 17 and drew more than 150 people to Cal State, San Bernardino. The conference was designed for newly married couples, those who are engaged, and those who are seriously dating. The Beloved Accompaniment process seeks to guide them in “living out God’s amazing plan for marriage and family life in this turbulent time in history.”

 The conference featured a keynote talk and several workshops, both in English and Spanish. Jackie Francois Angel and Bobby Angel, an Orange County couple involved in music, public speaking and Catholic education ministries, gave the keynote talk, “I Belong to my Lover, and My Lover Belongs to Me,” in English.  Jason Tinoco, who with his wife, Lorena, is marriage ministry coordinator at Sacred Heart, Rancho Cucamonga, gave the same keynote talk in Spanish.

 Workshops covered such areas as - how to maintain healthy communication, sexuality, sacramental preparation, and “How to Bear Fruit Without Drying Out,” which explores maintaining a healthy marriage amidst daily chaos and demands.

 The Office of Young Catholics partnered in the Conference to reach out to young adult Catholics involved in serious relationships who are contemplating the vocation of marriage.

 “We want you to speak of your dreams and challenges,” wrote Brenda Noriega, Young Adult Programs Coordinator. “We welcome you as you are in this time of transition and important life-long decisions.”

 The Beloved Conference concluded with Mass, celebrated by Father Emmanuel Azudiugwu, Parochial Vicar at St. Catherine of Alexandria Parish in Temecula.