Couples Renew their Commitment at Annual Marriage Mass

On Saturday 4 May hundreds of married couples celebrating milestone anniversaries made their way to St Chad’s Cathedral for the annual Thanksgiving Mass for Marriage.

The commemorative Mass booklet listed 60 couples celebrating milestone anniversaries in 2024, all the way up to 73 years, along with one couple preparing to marry. Many other couples also participated.

The Mass was celebrated by Archbishop Bernard Longley who lead couples to renew their commitment, saying:

“Dear friends, commemorating the anniversary of that celebration at which you joined your lives in an unbreakable bond through the Sacrament of Matrimony, you now intend to renew before the Lord the promises you made to one another.

“Turn to the Lord in prayer, that these vows may be strengthened by divine grace.”

Couples then made a renewal of commitment to each other, saying:

Husbands: “Blessed are you, Lord, for by your goodness I took (her name) as my wife.”

Wives: “Blessed are you, Lord, for by your goodness I took (his name) as my husband.”

Couples: “Blessed are you, Lord, for in the good and the bad times of our life you have stood lovingly by our side.

“Help us, we pray, to remain faithful in our love for one another, so that we may be true witnesses to the covenant you have made with humankind.”

Archbishop Bernard opened his Homily with:

“I am delighted to be with you today for this celebration of Mass in thanksgiving for the Sacrament of Marriage and for the gift of married life.  Today we have a broad representation from those who are preparing for Marriage to those who have been married for 73 years and all the significant anniversaries in between!  Thank you for your witness through this Sacrament to one another and for your lived experience of married life that is such an inspiration to us today and for which I am grateful as we celebrate with you.

“Today’s gathering reminds us of the collaborative and co-ordinated effort that is needed to make God’s merciful love known in the heart of the world and within our homes and communities.  At the heart of marriage is your love, reflecting the love of Christ for his Body the Church.  Despite all the pressures to understand it differently, we regard marriage as a sacramental gift, bestowed by God for the happiness and holiness of those who enter this enriching though challenging way of life.”

Read Homily in full

Thank you to all who joined us today for this Thanksgiving Mass for Marriage. We pray for those preparing to marry, those with significant anniversaries and all married couples.

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