On Saturday 8th June over six hundred married couples filled Westminster Cathedral for the Annual Mass in Thanksgiving for Matrimony. All the couples had been invited by Cardinal Nichols because they are celebrating a significant anniversary this year. One hundred and fifty-two of the couples have been married for fifty or more years and one couple were married seventy-one years ago.
Some of the more elderly couples were accompanied by adult children to support them. On the other hand many of the younger couples were accompanied by young children and there were several ‘Baby on Board’ badges on display. It was truly a family celebration.
The First Reading was read by Godfrey Nunes and the Second Reading by Henley Joseph of Westminster Explore. The Intercessions were led by Marriage Educators Peter and Meilin Augustine. The Offertory Gifts were taken up by two couples with anniversaries in the same week as the Mass; Godfrey and Hilda Nooha and Jerry and Judy Fernandez.
In his homily Cardinal Nichols described this particular Mass as “an act of witness, a powerful sign of the resilient faith and love found in Christian marriage”.
The front cover of the Mass booklet featured an icon of the Marriage Feast of Cana by Ukranian artist Mrs Lyuba Yatskiv and the Cardinal highlighted some of its significant features. He contrasted the gracefully intertwined hands of the bride and bridegroom which will be used to build their future life together with the beseeching and blessing hands of Mary and Jesus.
At the end of Mass the Cardinal processed to the Cathedral Piazza and took time to meet the couples personally as they left.
For the Official Photographs of Mass in Thanksgiving for Matrimony 2019 SEE HERE