Sunday, October 17, 2010

Celebrating 40 Years

Last weekend, on 10/10/10, my parents renewed their marriage vows as they celebrated their 40th anniversary.  Our family gathered together just after 10 o'clock Mass for the vow renewal and blessing from Father Mike.

This year has been a reminder of the beauty and gift that we have in life, as my mom fought off a debilitating autoimmune disease last winter (celebrating her 63rd birthday in the hospital) and my dad was diagnosed with cancer.  You never know the day or the hour that God will call you home...and we are all so grateful that we had the chance to celebrate their marriage and love together.

They each wrote their own 'vows', and while my dad ended up just paraphrasing through tears (as is his custom), both passages of their words are beautiful and I want to share them with you. 

Above, Mom is sharing her thoughts:

From Song of Solomon 2:10-13:
My beloved spoke and said to me:
Rise up my love, my fair one, and come away.  
For lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone.
The flowers appear on the earth; the time of singing has come,
and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.
The fig tree puts forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grapes give a good smell.
Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away!

Tom, God has loved me through you.  I understand and have experienced mercy, grace, and unconditional love because of you.  

Wherever you do, I will go.  Wherever you stay, I will stay.
Your people shall be my people, and your God my God.

My dad's thoughts were a reflection on marriage:

My dearest Karol, when we got married 40 years ago, it was just a beginning.

Marriage is a covenant relationship, not a contract.  By contract, I mean marriage is a permanent commitment.  Viewing marriage this way gives us security and freedom.  Under covenant, I have a lifetime to learn how to bond together with you, my bride.  The "I do" I said on our wedding day was not the culmination of a relationship, but the beginning of a new commitment to work on my relationship with you for the rest of my life.

Covenant provides us with the challenge to grow in our marriage.  If I am committed for the long haul, I can either live in solitude, emotionally divorcing myself, or I can build friendship with you by working on communication and continuing to discover new things about you.

In a sense, then, covenant encourages me to know you and you to know me.  And it gives us a lifetime to grow together in deep friendship.  

I love you.

The Washington half of our family (left to right):
  • Jonathan, Thomas and me
  • My dad's brother Tim and his wife Sue, their son Brandon (who is the godson of my brother and me)
  • My parents in front
  • My cousin (my dad's brother Bill's son) Ben
  • Mike, Kristine, Max and Avila
And it wouldn't be a Mauss family event if we didn't have brunch at Anthony's following.  One of my  favorite moments was when Dad was playing peek-a-boo with Avila and Thomas.  It was hilarious hearing everyone giggle. 

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I am so happy to see your parents celebrating their 40th anniversary! Your mom looks absolutely beautiful and your dad is quite the handsome man!
Many blessings to your parents and prayers for many many more years to come!

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