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Marriage Jubilee Mass celebrates ‘faithful, permanent and life-giving love’

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Our Lady of Hope Church in Potomac Falls was filled with married couples and their families for the Marriage Jubilee Mass Oct. 15. The more than 200 couples celebrating their 25th and 50th wedding anniversaries had a total 7,725 years of married love between them, said Arlington Bishop Michael F. Burbidge. “Thank you for showing us a love like God's love —  faithful, permanent and life-giving,” he said.

In his homily, Bishop Burbidge spoke about Christ’s place in marriage. “In a society that struggles so much with permanency, I am sure you’re asked many times, ‘How do you do this?’ I’m sure your answer is the same all the time, ‘Only in Jesus,’ ” he said. “(Marriage is) a sacrament because it's a sign, a visible sign of the love that the Lord has for His bride, the Church.”

After the homily, each of the couples turned to one another and renewed the marriage promises they made 25 or 50 years ago, and received a blessing from Bishop Burbidge. The annual Mass is sponsored by the diocesan Office of Marriage, Family and Respect Life. 


Lawrence and Jacqueline Delclos


Married Oct 17, 1992, in New Hampshire

Three children

Parishioners of St. John the Evangelist Church in Warrenton

Why are you grateful for God’s presence in your marriage?

Jacqueline: It grounds us, and it’s something in common that we share. It’s helped us through difficult times.

Lawrence: That’s the most important thing.

Jacqueline: Having faith in a God that loves us, that we don’t have to do it on our own.

Lawrence: We need that.

Jacqueline: Our best friends are here because they’re celebrating 25 years and they’re our neighbors. That helps, having a community that supports your same values.

Lawrence: I think having the kids here and what it shows them is probably the most important thing. They all gave us the thumbs up, too.

Deepak and Freda Mhetar


Married Feb. 1, 1992, in India

One child

Parishioners of All Saints Church in Manassas

Why are you grateful for God’s presence in your marriage?

Freda: There are so many reasons I cannot tell. God has been so wonderful to us, especially for 25 years. Just keeping the faith alive, I’m very grateful to God for that.

Joe and Sara Easter


Dec. 9, 1967, in Nebraska

Three children, one grandchild

Parishioners of Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Winchester

Why are you grateful for God’s presence in your marriage?

Joe: He’s kept us together all these years.

Sara: All the blessings and the strength to get through the tough times.

Joe: Any time you have a problem, you go to God for the answer. You listen to Him, not yourself. Although you don’t agree with everything, it’s the best. He leads you.

Paul and Elaine Pelletier


Married July 1, 1967, in New Hampshire

Three children, four grandchildren

Parishioners of St. Bernadette Church in Springfield

Why are you grateful for God’s presence in your marriage?

Paul: He gave us health, longevity and happiness.

Elaine: And our children and grandchildren.

Buy photos from the Marriage Jubilee Mass here.

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2017