By Seth Gonzales
The Texas Catholic
As Beatrice Vera reflected on 70 years of marriage to her husband Albert, a few recurring themes began to surface.
“You need to have a lot of patience, a lot of understanding and try to work things out,”
said Vera, a St. Monica Catholic Church parishioner. “Young people today, they want things now. Our marriage wasn’t perfect, but we worked things out.”
Vera was one of more than 240 couples recognized by Dallas Bishop Kevin J. Farrell during the Diocesan Silver and Gold Mass on August 29. Bishop Farrell congratulated the couples on their anniversaries and said their witness of the sanctity of marriage stands firmly in contrast with modern societal views on sex and marriage.
“The sacrament of marriage comes from the very moment of creation when God created us male and female, and in that act of creation he created the sacrament of marriage,” Bishop Farrell said. “No matter what legislation, no matter what law, no matter what Congress says, no matter what the Supreme Court may decide, marriage in the eyes of God is between a man and a woman.”
Bishop Farrell said while love may initially grow spontaneously, it requires many years of hard work on the part of both husband and wife. He recalled the advice Pope Francis gave to thousands of couples during a public audience on Valentine’s Day in 2014: always remember to say “please, thank you, and I’m sorry.”
“If we all remembered those three words, life would be much more simple and God would be much more present in our world today,” Bishop Farrell said.
Married for 25 years, Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church parishioners Todd and Tisa White said those words have played a major role in raising their four children.
“They’re exceptionally important,” Todd said. “A lot of times when you’re in a house and things are busy you get a little rude with one another. You do have to remember not to do that and to treat each other with kindness always.”
Mary and John Hartley, parishioners at St. Gabriel the Archangel Catholic Church made the trip from McKinney to attend the Mass in celebration of their 55 years of marriage.
“It’s a long journey,” John said. “You don’t go into it for the now, you go into it for forever. Everything is wonderful when you’re first married and its brand new, but it’s a long haul.”
Before closing the Mass, Bishop Farrell once again thanked couples in attendance for persevering through that long haul with love and patience.
“You are the shining light that the Gospel speaks of in our society,” Bishop Farrell said. “I thank you for being faithful to the vows that you committed to live. I thank you for the testimony that you give to married life. It is more important today than it was the day you were married that you give witness to the fidelity and the lastingness of married life.”