Abilene Christian College - Prickly Pear Yearbook (Abilene, TX)

 - Class of 1983

Page 121 of 424

 

Abilene Christian College - Prickly Pear Yearbook (Abilene, TX) online yearbook collection, 1983 Edition, Page 121
Page 121



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opejir Ike azmily Throughout the ages, few things have stood as firmly as the family and the home. The desire for these integral parts of our lives to be emphasized was evident in the demand for a nationally-known seminar that had its roots at ACU, The Marriage Enrichment Seminar, conducted by Drs. Carl Brecheen and Paul Faulkner, began in 1974. Since that time more than 45,000 people had listened to the two pro- fessors talk about marriage and how to make it work, The idea for the seminar originated during a 1971 Vaca- tion Bible School in Overland Park, Kan. Brecheen spoke about the home to the adults in the congregation. The elders enjoyed the class so much they invited him to come back and speak to the teenagers of the congregation. In june of 1972, Brecheen and Faulkner returned to Overland Park and spoke again on the home. It was during the plane trip back to Abilene that "the seminar was born," said Brecheen. "We felt like we couldn't spend enough time 45-minute segments, had been shown all over the country and more than 100,000 people had seen them by 1982. With the two men working so closely, it seemed in- evitable that tension or competition might have surfaced in their relationship. But such was not the case. The two began their friendship in 1948 as roommates at Abilene Christian College. Since then their relationship had grown into a friendship of mutual trust and respect. "That friendship is crucial to the seminar's success," said Brecheen. "We have to make so many decisions that we must have confidence in each other. We must be able to trust each other. And we do." "Carl and I are not identical," said Faulkner, "but we real- ly fit together. You cannot have a deep friendship unless your wives are good friends - ours are." "Thirty-five years we've been so close," he said, "and to with everyone we wanted to. So in order to reach the hearts of families, we were going to have to reach the couples." Later that year Brecheen attended a weekend seminar at McMurry College where he became convinced he and Faulkner could come up with their own program. The two worked out a format and put together a 150-page seminar manual that participants could take home. In September of 1974, the first seminar took place in Houston. "The seminar is preventive in nature," said Brecheen, ex- plaining that their purpose is to save marriages from ending in divorce by offering couples solutions and alternatives. "By the time people come to a marriage counselor, scars are too deep. We wanted to get to people before the pro- blems arose," he said. After the seminar's success reached a point that the two were finding it almost impossible to keep up with the re- quests for the seminar, the idea of making a film seemed like an answer to prayers. "We were doing about 15 seminars a year and it was hectic," said Brecheen. "Even now we have requests scheduled through 1988" Sweet Publishing Company, based in Dallas, approached the men and offered to film the seminar that was scheduled for Nov. 6-7, 1980, at the Abilene Civic Center. On Oct. 7, 1980, the contract was signed. The films, available as eight this day we have never had an argument. We do have dif- , 5 . .,,,. .. ...... H,,,, ,. , ' 'F ferences of opinion, but even those are very slight." Some special memories of the seminar years include receiving the Christian Film Series of the Year Award in 1981, and two seminars in Coeur D'Alene, Idaho, and Sum- mit, NJ. "I remember well the one and one-half foot deep snow we drove through from the airport to get to the church building in Coeur D'Alene," said Brecheen. "It was dusk and as we were driving, Paul and I were discussing how we didn't think anyone would be there." But as they pulled into the parking lot, Brecheen said, "we could hear them singing inside, just waiting for us." More than 250 people had come, some had driven more than 400 miles to attend. "We just couldn't believe it. Those Christians from so far away were so excited and hungry for good fellowship. It was a memorable weekend." In Summit, NJ., more than 800 people from all over New England gathered in a high school auditorium to attend the seminar. "They were just excited to be together because the congregations up there are so small," said Brecheen. How much longer will the two professors continue to share their thoughts on marriage with audiences around the world? "As long as Carl and I can keep goingg we want to do the seminar till we're 150," said Faulkner. - Elite Smith FI. GOOGFTIHN - Left: Dr. Carl Brecheen talks to one ol the Lectureship guest speakers. Right: Dr. Paul Faulkner listens during a discussion in his office. Brecheen-Faulknerf 117

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