Golden and silver anniversary Mass celebrates marriage

BOSTON -- Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley celebrated Mass for couples commemorating their golden and silver wedding anniversaries May 27, Pentecost Sunday, at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.

Family and friends of the 171 anniversary couples from throughout the archdiocese filled the middle section of the cathedral for the annual Mass sponsored by the Office of Life and Family Ministries.

“We are so thankful to the cardinal for his presence at the day and for all of his support for the marriage vocation,” said Kari Colella, the office’s coordinator of marriage ministries. “He has been a wonderful leader for us.”

The cardinal addressed the couples before the renewal of vows saying, “You stand before us as witnesses to the married love which Christ abundantly blessed on your wedding day. I invite you now to renew the promises you made in mutual and lasting fidelity.”

James and Ellen Rafferty, celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary, brought up the gifts with Richard and Michelle Binzel of Lexington, married 25 years. The Rafferty’s son, Father Tom Rafferty, parochial vicar at St. Patrick Parish in Natick, concelebrated the Mass.

“It was really lovely,” said Michelle Binzel. “I really enjoyed the cardinal’s homily and how he tied together Pentecost with the Sacrament of Marriage.”

Binzel said that she and her husband arrived early, it was their first visit to the cathedral, and she was amazed at the table full of long-stemmed red roses set up inside the entrance. Each woman was given a rose.

When asked if she and her husband would be back for their golden anniversary, Binzel said with a laugh, “Absolutely -- I hope we last that long.”