Contributors Family matters

Join the archbishop in celebrating your 50th wedding anniversary

Family matters
Deacon Tony Zimmerman is the lead archdiocesan consultant for the office of marriage and family life.

by Deacon Tony Zimmerman

One of my least favorite ways to kill time is to hang out in the gate area waiting for a flight.

One day, as I was waiting for a return flight from Baltimore to Kansas City, “killing time” turned into a celebration.

From out of nowhere, an elderly couple appeared, escorted in their wheelchairs by their grandchildren. This couple rode side-by-side holding hands, all the while laughing and teasing one another.

He called her his Miss America. Their grandchildren told me that they were in their 90s and been married over 60 years.

On the flight, I felt lucky to be seated in the row in front of this couple as their laughter and teasing continued.

When I met my wife at the baggage claim, as that wonderful couple passed by, I hugged my wife and told her I wanted our future to be as joy-filled and loving.

More recently, my wife and I had the privilege to give an award to a couple for being the longest married couple in Kansas that year.

They had been married 81 years. They were so filled with joy. Like everyone, I could not resist asking their secret to achieving a joy-filled marriage of 81 years.

With a twinkle in her eyes and a smile she replied, “It was easy. I let him have my way.” All those present broke out in laughter.

Examples of married love and commitment like these are vital to giving hope to those who are considering marriage. A study conducted in a “typical” American town discovered that many couples who aspire to marriage hesitate because so many couples they know do not seem very happy or have experienced divorce.

Studies show that married couples who experience the most joy and satisfaction in their relationship dedicate 8-12 hours per year to focusing on what gives joy to one another. This includes a weekly date night or attending an enrichment offered by their parish at least once a year.

What are your plans to keep your marriage an exciting example of love to inspire your children, family members, neighbors and co-workers?

Each year, the archdiocese offers a Mass celebrated by our archbishop, with a reception following, for all couples married 50 years.

Imagine witnessing over 100 couples standing in the presence of their children and grandchildren as they hold hands and face one another reaffirming the promises they made to one another on their wedding day!

Examples of committed, lifelong married love give a powerful witness to the joy that marriage offers.

Our next 50th anniversary Mass and reception will be held on June 12 at Church of the Nativity, Leawood, at 2:30 p.m. A reception will follow. Contact your parish for an invitation to this celebration for yourselves or your parents.

For more information, call the archdiocesan office of marriage and family life at (913) 647-0329.

About the author

Deacon Tony Zimmerman

Leave a Comment