Through the good times and the bad

After Bishop Dennis Sullivan gave his homily — after he got some hearty laughs from the couples with a joke and then got them feeling sentimental by talking about the sacredness of marriage — came the renewal of promises and blessing of rings.

Husbands and wives turned to each other, joined hands and said in unison:

Margaret and Joseph Thomas, parishioners of Saint Mary Parish, Gloucester, celebrating 50 years of marriage, participate in the offertory with presentation of gifts to Bishop Dennis Sullivan at the Wedding Anniversary Mass June 10. Photo by James A. McBride

“Blessed are you, Lord, for in the good times 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.”

Then they touched each other’s rings as the bishop blessed them.

Bishop Sullivan celebrated the annual Wedding Anniversary Mass for men and women married 25, 50, 60 and 70 years on Sunday, June 10, at Mary, Mother of Mercy Parish, Glassboro.

Deacon Samuel and Rose Soto of Saint Bridget Parish, Glassboro, married 25 years. Photo by Mike Walsh

Two couples were celebrating seven decades of married life, Francis and Mae Flynn of Saint Bridget Parish, Glassboro, and John J. and Nicolene Griffin, Sr. of Saint Maximilian Kolbe Parish, Marmora.

In addition to celebrating Mass, the bishop posed for photos with the couples.

Marriage is a sacrament not only for the bride and groom, but for the entire Catholic Church, because it proclaims that “love is possible,” Pope Francis said a few weeks ago at morning Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae at the Vatican.

After the Mass in Glassboro, after the photographs and refreshments, husband and wife left to go home and continue proclaiming that love is possible.

See full list of couples at: