Tomorrow, Saturday 14th May, His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols will welcome 700 couples, celebrating over 25,000 years of marriage, to a Mass of thanksgiving for the Sacrament of Matrimony at Westminster Cathedral at 3pm.
The Mass for Matrimony has been an annual event since 2008 and this year the couples celebrating milestone anniversaries are expected to join the Cardinal to renew their vows.
In his welcome to the couples, the Cardinal explained, ‘Christ deliberately performed his first miracle at a wedding to show us just how central marriage is to God’s merciful plan to restore lost humanity to its glory. The manner in which he does this, changing something ordinary like water in to something we desire and enjoy, is richly symbolic of how the human love of a man and woman, joined in matrimony, is transformed in to a God-like mercy and forgiveness, which blesses and sustains the union for a lifetime, spilling out in to the lives of all those around them, especially their immediate family.’
Coming during the Jubilee of Mercy and soon after the release of Amoris Laetitia, this year’s Mass for Matrimony is an occasion to reflect on the role of married couples as ‘unique examples of mercy’. It is a reminder of God’s love that ‘is always abundantly present in the Church and the world’.
Copies of Amoris Laetitia will be made available for the couples, who will be invited to ‘enjoy it, reflect on it together as a couple and with your families, take your time over it and be uplifted by its message’.
Picture: Thanksgiving Mass for the Sacrament of Matrimony in Westminster Cathedral last year. © Mazur/catholicnews.org.uk