Portsmouth: celebrating 130 marriages

 About 130 couples are gathering in Basingstoke today, 12 June for a celebration of marriage.  The couples, from all over Portsmouth Diocese, are all celebrating the 25th, 40th, 50th, 60th or above wedding anniversaries in 2010.  One couple are marking their 70th Wedding Anniversary.

In his homily, Bishop Crispian Hollis said: “Through thick and thin, in good times and bad, in joy and sacrificial suffering, you have found the holiness of your marriages precisely in the fact that you have unstintingly given yourselves to each other in selfless love. You have constantly striven to build up those right relationships which are the bedrock of a successful marriage.

 … Your married life is an invitation from the Lord to enjoy your lives together and truly to “go out and bear fruit”. And this brings me to another emphasis of Christian marriage which I think is vitally important. In the Church, you are not simply married for yourselves; you are married for all of us and for all who live around you. You give us all the opportunity to see and experience – made flesh in yourselves – the love that the Lord has for each of us and for all his people. You show us what it means to lay down life for friends. You are witnesses to the Gospel so that when I – or any other preacher – want to talk about Christ’s love for us, all we  have to do is to point to you and say “there you are; look at that.”

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