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80 couples renew vows at St. Joseph Cathedral Anniversary celebration

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St. Joseph Cathedral welcomed over 80 couples celebrating special wedding anniversaries of 50, 60 and 70 years to a special wedding anniversary celebration. The Oct. 24 Mass, sponsored by the Office of Pastoral Ministries, recognizes and honors the commitment made by couples to share their lives and help each other grow with God.

“We congratulate you. We thank you for your example of life and love among us,” said Father Sean Paul Fleming, rector of St. Joseph Cathedral, in welcoming the guests.

“What an amazing feat,” added Bishop Michael W. Fisher, who celebrated the special Mass. “It’s a joyful day for you, and a joyful day for the Church. We always rejoice in that gift of love, and that example of love which you bring to our world, to our community, to our Church.”

At the close of Mass, Bishop Fisher invited the couples to renew their marriage vows.

“Today, you stand before the world as a striking testimony of what God’s grace, conferred in marriage, can effect in the husband and wife who will work along the divine treasure that is in them. Our world has great need for this living testimony which your fidelity and loyalty gives to all. Those who receive the sacrament of marriage are sanctified for their duties of their place in life. In the name of Christ, of the Church, and all who are present, I extend heartfelt congratulations to you with prayerful wishes for your future years together.”

The bishop then asked the couples to face their spouses and vow to take care of each other in good times and in bad, in sickness and health, and to love and honor each other in all the days of their lives.

After Mass, many of the couples had their photos taken with the bishop. They were asked the secret to a long and healthy marriage. Most had to think. Some had humorous replies.

“Keep him happy,” said Sandy Radens, who has been married to husband, John, for 51 years.

“Both working different shifts,” suggested Rod Simeone, who is also celebrating 51 years with wife, Jeri.

Perhaps the answer takes a few more years to figure out. The Meyers, married 60 years have some serious thoughts.

“Love. Just love and working together,” said Mary Ann.

“Trust each other,” added Norman.

It’s also good to know when love is real and the person you chose as a spouse is right for you.

“It’s good to have a good supportive partner,” said Deacon Mike Anderson. He knows of what he speaks. He decided to go to graduate school while he and Gretchen had three small children, and later entered the diaconate all with the support of his wife. A small reception followed at St. Anthony Parish, just down the street from the cathedral.

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