January 14, 2004

Evenhanded Premarriage Counseling?

Tyler Cowen notes a new Bush initiative as reported in the New York Times. I know that my church (Romanian Byzantine Catholic) has a program in place for free marriage counseling prior to marriage. In fact, if you don't go, you normally can't get a church wedding in my diocese. The counseling has been offered free to this point. It would be child's play from an accounting standpoint for there to be a charge that would be picked up by the parish absent government support but would enable the Church to become eligible for the payment.

The only political question is how quickly and how loudly the separation of church and state types are going to jump at the prospect of churches picking up a hefty portion of the check for this kind of marriage stabilizing counseling? Will their objections sink the entire enterprise of strengthening marriage or will their objections be politely ignored?

It's something to keep an eye on.

Posted by TMLutas at January 14, 2004 10:17 AM