By Marnie McAllister, Record Editor
Couples married for 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25 years of marriage this year celebrated their milestones with Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz Feb. 16 during a Mass of Thanksgiving at St. Raphael Church.
During the annual liturgy, he led 50 couples in a renewal of their commitments to one another and reminded them that matrimony is a vocation.
“We desperately need in our culture people to stand up for married life and for family,” he told the couples during the Mass.
Marriage, he said, is public, not a private endeavor. And it’s one of two sacraments of communion, which he said are sacraments meant for the salvation of someone else. The other is Holy Orders.
“The grace of matrimony is the grace given to a husband not for himself, but that he might minister to his wife,” the archbishop explained.
Likewise, he said, the grace given to a wife is given for her ministry to her husband.
In renewing their commitments, the archbishop encouraged the couples to ask God for assistance and place Christ at the center of their lives.
“The ones who place God at the center of their lives love selflessly, forgive more easily and when storms enter their lives, can weather them graciously.”
Among those who were recognized at the celebration were 29 couples celebrating 25 years of marriage.
A special Mass of Thanksgiving for couples celebrating 30, 40, 50 and 60-plus years of marriage will be celebrated this fall.