The Parish of Saints Joachim and Anne in Shakopee celebrated World Marriage Day on Sunday, February 8, with a Mass and reception at the Church of St. Mark. Father Peter Wittman, pastor, celebrated the Mass, and Deacon Bill Heiman preached the homily. Married couples from the parish participated in the liturgy as lectors, ushers, gift bearers, and extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion. The Spirit Choir provided music for the Mass.
After the Mass, the social center was filled to capacity as parishioners enjoyed conversation and refreshments, including wedding cake, punch, and coffee. A display of more than fifty wedding photos and memorabilia created much discussion and laughter over how people have changed (or have not) over the years.
Parishioners who registered in advance received a certificate commemorating the number of years they have been married. The parish was pleased to recognize Robert and Lavonne Monnens as the couple who had been married the longest. Mr. and Mrs. Monnens were married 68 years ago in the Church of St. Mary. We also recognized two couples married in the Philippines, as those who were married the farthest away: Lloyd & Angelica Baul and Edsel & Susan Faunillan. Cleon & Beverly Ince and Bob & Barb Stark were married in a double wedding at St. Mary’s in June 1962. (Barb and Beverly are twin sisters.) Of those who registered for certificates, more than a third were married in Shakopee, a testament to the community spirit of our parish.
One attendee, married for 66 years, shared that he considered his marriage to be “the best part of my life,” and he thanked the parish for celebrating and affirming this sacrament.