Bishop Edward K. Braxton spoke about love to the couples who attended an annual liturgy June 5 at the cathedral in Belleville.
The Mass of Thanksgiving in Celebration of Life and Love recognized couples celebrating 25, 30, 40, 50, 60 and 70 years of marriage.
Many of the more than two hundred couples attending were celebrating 50 or 60 years of marriage, with two couples celebrating 70 years of marriage this year.
One of those couples, Marie and Ernest Zarlingo, said they met in Venice, Ill., where their brothers lived on the same block. Marie was 18 when she married Ernest who was then 22. They were married in Arkansas. They moved back to this area in 1951 to live.
Why did they come back? According to Marie Zarlingo, wages were better and jobs were more plentiful, so they returned.
The couple, now 88 and 92 respectively, lives in Smithton and belongs to St. John the Baptist Parish.
Couples came from many parishes across the diocese for this celebration.