The ‘power’ of the sacrament of marriage renews couples
By Catherine Sheehan
Annual Marriage Masses were recently celebrated in both the north and south of the Archdiocese, with couples coming together to recommit to living their marriages in holiness.
The couples were celebrating significant anniversary milestones ranging from five to 60 years of marriage.
At St Mary’s Cathedral in Hobart on 12 February eight couples gathered for the Mass celebrated by Fr Leonard Caldera. While at the Church of the Apostles in Launceston on 19 February five couples came together for the Mass celebrated by Fr Ben Brooks.
All couples received a special blessing and renewed their commitment to live their marriages in holiness and had their wedding rings blessed.
In his homily Fr Leonard reminded the congregation that the sacrament of marriage was not something God bestows upon a couple, but rather something they bestow upon one another.
“God is the one who blesses that sacrament,” Fr Leonard said. “It is you, yourselves, who give that sacrament to each other. And therefore, God becomes the glue that binds you together… in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. It is God who binds your marriage together.”
“As we celebrate this solemn occasion, as we recall the words of God in Scripture who said that man and woman are made ideal for each other, let us ask God to bless each and every married couple here.”
Marie Rose and Daniel Demanet who have been married for 50 years said renewing their commitment to each other at the Marriage Mass gave them a sense of “inner strength” as they seek to live out their vocation.
“It was a way to reaffirm the commitment that we made to one another all those years ago,” Marie Rose said.
“It was important because receiving a blessing makes you feel stronger and less weary. Therefore, you can carry on with God’s strength.”
They added that the secret to a successful marriage was to “always be together, work together, talk together, be happy together and sort out all problems together”.
“It’s not going to always be ‘rosy’ everyday… stick together and pray together in the good times and in the bad times. Never give up.”
Dr Rachel Bradley, Director of the Office of Life, Marriage and Family said the annual Marriage Masses celebrated in the north and south of the Archdiocese were an important reminder of the power of the sacrament.
“I found it quite moving to watch couples who have been married for decades renew their commitment to one another and ponder how the grace of the sacrament has enabled people to keep growing in love over sometimes 60 years.
“It was a real witness to the power of the sacrament and I hope could encourage younger people that it really is possible to be faithful to those vows and flourish within that lifelong partnership.”