National Marriage Week USA and World Marriage Day are opportunities for "building a culture of life and love that begins with promoting and defending marriage and the family," said Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Philadelphia.
The archbishop, who is chairman of the Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, made the comments in a letter to his brother bishops about the weeklong observance Feb. 7-14 and the international day, observed Feb. 10 this year.
The USCCB offers resources in English and Spanish about marriage, the promotion and defense of marriage as a lifelong union of one man and one woman through its websites ForYourMarriage.org, PorTuMatrimonio.org and MarriageUniqueForAReason.org.
Additional resources specifically for the celebration of National Marriage Week, including a preaching resource, poster, and prayer intentions, can be found on the USCCB website.
A daily virtual marriage retreat for couples is currently available on the ForYourMarriage.org website and via the For Your Marriage social media channels on Facebook and Twitter. The retreat, which began Feb. 7, focuses on the theme "Marriage: Made for a Reason."
A conversation about marriage will be livestreamed on the USCCB Facebook page Feb. 13.
National Marriage Week USA, launched in 2010, is part of an international event seeking to mobilize individuals, organizations, and businesses in a common purpose to strengthen marriage in communities and influence the culture.
World Marriage Day was started in 1983 by Worldwide Marriage Encounter.
Archbishop Chaput said in his letter he hoped these observances to celebrate marriage would "foster an ever-deeper appreciation for the gift of marriage and the blessings of family life."
"May the Lord reward you for proclaiming, defending and witnessing to the beauty and gift of marriage and the family," he told the bishops.