Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of August 5, 2002
Pilgrims celebrate their love
Couples rediscover marriage's strength in WYD setting
By RENATO GANDIA
"It was God that brought us together and I think it is God that keeps us together."
- Sherry Sikora
Having met in a holy pilgrimage, Christ became an important part of their marriage. "Without him, we wouldn't be together," said Sherry, an X-ray technician from Athabasca.
"Christ is the centre of our marriage because we worship him and the love that he has for us brings us closer together."
They would not have rediscovered their faith and not found each other had they not attended WYD in Denver. "That's how our love began."
Because of such a blessing, Sherry believes if she is to be true to her faith, she must "encourage other young people to find their faith, even if they lost it, find it again. It's a journey. We're all on a journey and our (own) journey began in 1993 in Denver. We realized where we should be and where we are and where we want to be."
Convinced that the centrality of Jesus in everybody's life is of prime importance, Collin said, "Respect the Lord, pray to the Lord and live with the Lord, because if you don't live with one of those things, it would be difficult to be a good Christian couple and family."
While the Sikoras met in WYD and reminisced their romance, a couple from Camrose renewed their marriage vows during this event.
Beckie Kuefler couldn't describe what she felt when her husband asked, "Will you marry me again?"
They were not in a fancy restaurant or some other romantic place, where men usually pop such a question. They were in the midst of a pilgrimage.
"This has been the most amazing trip. We've had a kind of a rough year, which is normal in marriage. And I can't think of a better place to do something like this," 28-year-old Beckie told the WCR just before they renewed their vows.
"This is God's grace working. Right now, this is probably the holiest place in Canada, if not the world, and I can't imagine we're actually going to do this ever."
Communication, consideration and compassion and a sound prayer life kept their five-year marriage intact.
Just like his wife, Arlyn, 33, couldn't describe how he felt. "It's just overwhelming. I wish that we would have a happy, caring and loving life. It's going to be a battle, but all we have to do is to stay together and let God continue to be in our midst."
Having been blessed at this WYD, Beckie, who said this was their only holiday since their honeymoon, hopes their next holiday is another WYD.
Daniel and Patty Mallett, a newlywed couple from St. Joseph College's group, was one of several local couples on their honeymoon at WYD.
"WYD (gave) quite a different twist to our honeymoon," said 25-year-old Patty.
Instead of going to romantic places, they went to a holy hour.
The couple also went to Communion together because they learned from their marriage preparation it is good to receive the body and blood of Christ as one person.
Daniel, 23, questioned it all at first. "Why aren't we back on a beach somewhere enjoying our honeymoon, sitting back and relaxing, enjoying a good life?
"But it's just a great blessing to be here as a couple. I think it's a good start to live the sacrament of marriage."
Just being together as a couple, showing their love for each other let him feel he is living out the sacrament.
"Praying together as a couple brought us closer," confided Daniel.
Because they attended WYD with a host of their friends from St. Joe's, Patty felt blessed just because they were with such a vibrant and supportive community who values marriage.
Said Patty, "St. Joe's is an amazing and supportive community to start our married life."
Our mission: To serve our readers by bringing the Gospel to bear on current issues in the Church and in secular culture through accurate news coverage and reflective commentary.