Bishop Alan Hopes presided and the pews were packed, said Dr Antonia Braithwaite, chair of the Diocese of East Anglia Commission for Marriage and Family Life.
“We celebrated 43 couples, whose wedding anniversaries ranged from five years to 65 years. The couple married for 65 years were Patricia and John Simmonds from Huntingdon (pictured below with Bishop Alan).
“In his homily, the bishop encouraged all married couples in their vocation, commending them for the special work of sacrifice they have embraced: giving themselves physically and spiritually to each other, to their children, and to God. Through this loving sacrifice, he said, we come to know God, what God wants for us, and how we can be of service to the world, even just by our continued loyalty to each other, revealing thereby the sacramental nature of married life.
“The Bishop reminded us that we cannot do it alone, that we must pray for help when our lives becomes difficult. Marriage is not first and foremost out work, he said, but the work of God.
“This year we are also celebrating a virtual World Meeting of Families and in the diocese we are planning a year of family days in religious houses where parents can come together to work through the catechesis developed for families by the Vatican, where the children can play and married couples can support each other,” said Antonia.
Pictured above are all the couple marking significant anniversaries with Bishop Alan at the Marriage Mass and, below, Patricia and John Simmonds from Huntingdon with the bishop. Pictures by Antonia Braithwaite.