Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Elizabeth Ann Wells

5/5/2008 (5 years ago)

The Catholic Voice (www.catholicvoiceomaha.com)

RALSTON, Neb. (The Catholic Voice) - Todd and Deb Banchor say they are nothing special, but their marriage is.

KEEPING IT TOGETHER - Todd and Deb Banchor enjoy conversation at a local Scooters coffee shop. The Banchors, married 25 years, say peer marriage ministries, such as Worldwide Marriage Encounter, have helped them stay connected to each other and have renewed their commitment to marriage. (Elizabeth Ann Wells)

KEEPING IT TOGETHER - Todd and Deb Banchor enjoy conversation at a local Scooters coffee shop. The Banchors, married 25 years, say peer marriage ministries, such as Worldwide Marriage Encounter, have helped them stay connected to each other and have renewed their commitment to marriage. (Elizabeth Ann Wells)

Article Highlights

By Elizabeth Ann Wells

The Catholic Voice (www.catholicvoiceomaha.com)

5/5/2008 (5 years ago)

Published in Marriage & Family


Don’t misunderstand. The Banchors, members of St. Gerald Parish in Ralston, are not saying their own marriage is perfect. They have had ups and downs like almost every other couple. But, as far as they are concerned, the sacrament of marriage is perfect because God is part of that union.

They say they are enjoying the benefits of a healthy marriage and have worked to help others reap the blessings of a strong marriage with God at the center. One of their best tools is peer marriage ministry.

Married in 1983, they participated in two Worldwide Marriage Encounter Weekends in 1985 and 1989 in the Archdiocese of Denver. They said it renewed their marriage and solidified their desire to shine the light on the sanctity of marriage. Honoring that sanctity comes from a firm commitment to stay focused on each other.

“There is a saying that love is a decision,” Todd said, adding that they were challenged at their encounters to renew their decision every day.

“When you have been given something really great, you want to share that with other people,” said Deb. It led them to help first in Engaged Encounter and then Worldwide Marriage Encounter in Denver, Lincoln and now Omaha. Over the past 20-plus years, they have served in many roles in both movements. Each encounter has left the Banchors further committed.

Todd appreciates how Engaged Encounter reassures couples that their journey together can be wonderful with faith in God and their love for each other. He likens it to the mountain climber standing at the foot of a majestic mountain.

“Looking up, you know it’s going to be a beautiful journey, but you’re not sure what the paths and pitfalls are along the way,” he said.

As presenters at Marriage Encounter weekends, he said they regularly saw miraculous changes in people’s lives. Couples learn a communication technique called “dialoging.” It’s intended for daily use and helps couples to keep focusing on what is important - each other.

“We could see tensions between couples dissolve by the end. It’s for all ages. Every relationship can use a tune up or retreat,” he says. “When we would see other couples get re-energized, we wanted that for ourselves.”

Renew Church through renewal of marriage

Making their marriage the best it can be is the greatest thing the Banchors say they can do for their family. They also have made many friendships with people of like minds and similar values along the way. The constant reminder through their marriage encounter experiences reinforces their commitment to good marriages.

“Like all couples, our marriage has had its ups and downs,” Deb said. “It’s a human journey, but through it all you still know that this is the person that God gave me, and through the ups and downs, this person goes with me.”

This knowledge creates peace and offers comfort, the Banchors said. Home is the primary haven and within that home is the spouse. That promise of stability and support invigorates their own relationship and keeps them connected to their work in Worldwide Marriage Encounter because it’s the mission of the movement in action.

“That mission is to renew the church through the renewal of the sacrament of marriage. By renewing the church you’re changing the world. You must consider the ripple effect of loving relationships at home,” Todd said.

“That really does change the world.”


---

This story was made available to Catholic Online by permission of The Catholic Voice (www.catholicvoiceomaha.com), official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Omaha, Neb.



Comments


More Marriage & Family

Finding Your Best Friend 1,000 Miles Away

Image of Michael and Lauren were married this March.

By Catholic Match

I never really thought it could work, Lauren said, recalling her first encounter with Michael on CatholicMatch. He was so far away a thousand miles honestly didn't think we'd ever be more than friends. Michael and Lauren had free profiles on CatholicMatch, and after an ... continue reading


From Living Large to Putting God in Charge

Image of

By Catholic Match

The year was 1990 and Bob was, in his own words, living large. The then 29-year-old had graduated from Marquette University in Milwaukee several years earlier and spent over a year on the pro golf tour. He went to build a thriving CPA firm and thought himself to be in ... continue reading


Devil at work! Infidelity experts says adultery is good for marriage - if you don't get caught Watch

Image of Since launching in Canada on Valentine's Day in 2002, the adultery Web site has attracted more than 24 million members in 37 countries. South Korea joined last week.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Ashley Madison is a controversial Web site that enables married men and women to have xtramarital affair. Based in Canada, Noel Biderman is forthright about the right of the married to have affairs -- providing they don't get caught. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


The Path to Happiness for a Young Widow

Image of Bruce and Lauren are now happily married!

By Catholic Match

It's been said the hand of God works by way of coincidences, keeping Him invisible as He illuminates our path. That's how it worked for Bruce and Lauren, and how they get their first sense that something special was afoot. Lauren, 54-years-old, was recently widowed ... continue reading


A Marriage Built on a Firm Rock

Image of Ed and Francis both had great success thanks to CatholicMatch!

By Catholic Match

Frances already had an immensely positive experience with marriage when she came to CatholicMatch. A widow, she had great memories of her years with her late husband and if another marriage was to happen it would have to be on a firm foundation. I had a wonderful ... continue reading


Easy homemade play dough recipes, for the whole family to enjoy.

Image of Home made Play Doh is so much fun.

By Wendy C. R.N., BA

Every child loves to play with play dough and making your own play dough with your child can be fun. Here are three easy recipes for great homemade play dough. Kids are amazed when they learn how easy it is to make play dough wit this activity. The dough can be ... continue reading


Have a Great Family Easter Egg Hunt. Instead of just candy, why not fill your eggs with clues or puzzle pieces, or all sorts of things!

Image of Children love Easter Egg Hunts. Lets make it special this year.

By Wendy C. R.N., BA

Have an Family Easter Egg Hunts this year and fill the eggs with more than just candy. Here are 31 ideas to fill them with, and have fun! LOS ANGELES, CA - Need a fun idea to spruce up your Easter Egg Hunt? Instead of just candy, why not fill your eggs with clues or ... continue reading


Former 'house of horrors' abortion clinic to become emergency food, support center for poor families Watch

Image of The Philadelphia clinic was described as a chaotic

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

There is such a thing as a second chance. The notorious Delaware clinic in which abortionist Kermit Gosnell performed late-term abortions and executed children after birth will see a second life as an emergency food and support center for poor families. Lutheran ... continue reading


Hey dads! Pope Francis has an awesome message for you! Watch

Image of Pope Francis follows the example of St. Joseph, and blesses a child. Our clergy are father figures too.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

On the feast day of St. Joseph, Pope Francis spoke directly to dads, encouraging them to follow the example of St. Joseph and remain close to their children. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Yesterday was the feast day of St. Joseph and Pope Francis used the ... continue reading


Church must reconcile divorce and remarriage, German cardinal says Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Church needs to find a middle ground that does not destroy or abandon doctrine in regards to divorce and civil remarriages, Cardinal Walter Kasper says. The church must offer a "renewed" interpretation of Church teaching in order to help those whose ... continue reading


All Marriage & Family News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 3:11-26
11 Everyone came running towards them in great ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 8:2, 5, 6-7, 8-9
2 even through the mouths of children, or of babes in ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 24:35-48
35 Then they told their story of what had happened on ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 24th, 2014 Image

St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen
April 24: Franciscan Capuchin martyr. He was born Mark Rey is Sigmaringen, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter