Catholic Herald Staff
Sixty-seven couples renewed their wedding vows and celebrated their lives together Saturday, July 25, at the annual Wedding Anniversary Mass, celebrated by Fr. Jim Powers, Diocese of Superior administrator.
The Cathedral of Christ the King, Superior, hosted the event for couples married 10 years and longer.
“This is the first time I’ve been celebrant at the cathedral. If I get lost, be kind,” Fr. Powers joked. “Rice Lake isn’t that big, and I still get lost there.”
In his opening remarks, the priest noted “in light of the recent Supreme Court decision, how important it is that we take this opportunity to celebrate” the witness of married life.
“What a pleasure, what a privilege it is to be here on this beautiful day,” he began his homily. “I don’t know of any institution any more important than that of marriage, than that of family.”
The Gospel reading recounted Jesus’ first miracle, the changing of water into wine at the wedding feast at Cana.
“Of all the opportunities, of all the places, of all the situations, it takes place at a wedding feast,” he said. “You can’t possibly miss that importance the Lord places on marriage.”
The miracle signaled not only Jesus’ regard for marriage, but also the beginning of a new messianic era, the priest added. It’s important to invite God along on our journeys.
“You may not have had Jesus at your wedding reception making wine,” Fr. Powers said, but “he was present that day, on the day you were married.”
“He didn’t promise that it was always going to be a party, that it was always going to be sunshine and roses,” he added. “He did promise to be there, and to make the good times even more joyful.
“I would guess for any couple here, it hasn’t always been easy,” Fr. Powers continued. “It hasn’t always been fun. You’ve invited the Lord in … and through it all, you refused to take that easy way out.
“May the love that you share today … may that love continue to grow even stronger in faith,” he said. “What an incredible witness, and from the bottom of my heart, thank you.”
The couples renewed their vows during the Mass, and later processed up the aisle to receive certificates recognizing their commitment.
Before the conclusion of the Mass, Fr. Powers recognized Kathy Turba, retiring director of the Diocesan Chorale. Turba has served 14 years in the position, and the anniversary Mass was the chorale’s final performance under her leadership.
Following the Mass, the couples gathered in Kress Hall for lunch and fellowship, where couples married on the same date were seated together.
Jim and Jean Bednar, members of Holy Trinity, Haugen, traveled to Superior to celebrate their 40th anniversary. They share a wedding date with Robert and Theresa Obermueller, St. John the Baptist, Glenwood City.
The Bednars wanted to take advantage of the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to fete their 40th, Jean said. They enjoyed the celebration.
“It was very nice,” she added.