Marriage Is A Serious Institution – Elder Dr Joseph Osafo
A Clinical Psychologist and an Elder of The Church of Pentecost, Dr Joseph Osafo, has stated that the institution of marriage must be taken as seriously as education, health, spirituality and all other institutions that affect the well-being of the individual.
Elder Dr Osafo averred that most would-be couples enter marriages with limited knowledge on the realities of the institution. This, according to him, has affected the way people approach and deal with issues concerning marriage. He, therefore, advised church leaders and counsellors to do their best to give prospective couples the requisite pre-marital counselling they need to excel in marriage.
He made this statement during a training seminar organised by the Kaneshie Area Head, Apostle Mike Etrue, on Saturday, June 23, 2018, at the Shalom Worship Centre church complex. This was part of Kaneshie Area’s Marriage Week celebration held from June 18 to June 24, 2018.
Using facts from various research findings on marriage, Elder Dr Osafo stated that the institution of marriage is under great threat because while some couples see marriage as a funfair, others are also unwilling to go through the laid down procedure, and thereby rush through the counselling process. This, he said, goes a long way to affect the marriage.
He also observed that some young people have an idealised and idolised view of marriage due to the cues or mental images they pick from soap operas. This has made them lose touch of the realities in marriage. Lastly, he noted that others see marriage as a third party and a license for sex.
Elder Dr Osafo, who is also a Lecturer at the Psychology Department of the University of Ghana, Legon, admonished marriage counsellors to be confidential, counsel counselees with their spouses, do minimal disclosure, desist from investigative counselling and refrain from being judgemental during counselling sessions.
“You are not supposed to be engaging in investigative counselling where you ask probing questions into the history of would-be-couples. Some of these questions may not be relevant to the counselling process but some counsellors ask them to satisfy their curiosity. However, use the counselees’ histories as a springboard to prepare them for their marriages”, he advised.
He also encouraged all counsellors to get copies of “Pre-Marital Counselling Handbook” of The Church of Pentecost and use them as the guide to counsel prospective couples.
Report by: Pastor Kingsley Addai and Gideon Osei Ansong