Ministry seeks to reignite romance in marriages

Liberty Baptist Church Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball queen and king Nina and Robert Johnson. (Contributed)

Liberty Baptist Church Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball queen and king Nina and Robert Johnson. (Contributed)

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

ALABASTER – Sometimes, it’s nice to just get away from it all and rekindle the spark with the one you love, said Alabaster resident Gisele Brown.

“Marriages are always under attack, and the targets are usually the head of the household,” Brown said during a March 12 interview. “If we can rekindle that romance and strengthen our marriages, it will improve our communities all around.”

Brown and her husband, Zel, are members of the Liberty Baptist Church couples’ ministry, which regularly plans outings and events for the church’s married couples.

Through the ministry, the group plans events such as dinner outings, cookouts, movie dates and Bible study lessons, and often arranges child care and youth-oriented activities to allow parents to have free time alone with each other.

“We try to have at least one event outside of the church every month. It’s usually more than one event,” Brown said, noting the ministry serves couples married for only a few months to couples married for more than 40 years. “It’s amazing what just going to a movie together on a Friday night can do.”

On Valentine’s Day this year, the ministry hosted its most successful event yet: The Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball at the Tutwiler Hotel in Birmingham. The event drew about 35 church members and several guests from nearby churches, and featured Liberty Baptist members Robert and Nina Johnson as the king and queen of the ball.

“It was just unlimited how much fun we had. It was so relaxing,” Brown said. “It was one of the nicest functions we had.”

All couples left with gifts consisting of wine glasses, non-alcoholic champagne, Valentines treats, praline candy and Mardi Gras-themed handkerchiefs, Brown said.

“The feedback has been wonderful. It’s a great ministry,” Brown said. “It’s easy to get caught up in your kids’ football games, all their activities and the things you have to deal with in your daily life.

“You just have to make room and time for each other,” Brown said.