September 22, 2006

Witnesses to love: Jubilarians honored at Golden Wedding Anniversary Mass

By Mary Ann Wyand

Sixty-eight years ago, Chester and Cecelia Hublar of New Albany promised God that they would love and cherish each other all the days of their lives.

Nearly seven decades later, the Hublars celebrated their promise by renewing their marriage vows in the presence of Archbishop Daniel M. Buechlein during the archdiocesan Golden Wedding Anniversary Mass on Sept. 17 at SS. Peter and Paul Cathedral in Indianapolis.

“Just take each day at a time and do the best you can,” Cecelia Hublar explained after the Mass, in order to have a long and happy marriage.

“Be truthful with each other and sincere, and always respect your partner’s views,” Chester Hublar added. “Talk things over.”

They were married on Aug. 24, 1938, at the St. Mary Parish rectory in New Albany. Later, he joined the Church and they raised three children—Dwan Hublar, Robert Hublar and Theresia Ordner—in the Catholic faith.

Attending Mass together “makes you realize that everything is based on God,” he said, “so you have to base your marriage on that, too.”

The Hublars, now members of Holy Family Parish in New Albany, were the longest married couple in attendance at the archdiocesan Mass that honors jubilarians married 50 years or longer.

They were among 177 married couples from central and southern Indiana who participated in the Mass with their families.

“All together, they represent 9,454 years of marriage,” Daniel Sarell, director of the archdiocesan Office of Family Ministries, told the archbishop and assembly.

“In total, they have 780 children, 1,645 grandchildren and 363 great-grandchildren … and counting,” Sarell said. “Twenty-one couples present have been married for 60 years or longer.”

During his homily, Archbishop Buechlein thanked the couples for their faithful love and commitment to the sacrament of marriage.

“How blessed you are to have this time together in your golden years, even if in sickness,” he said. “And more than we, your children, can ever tell you, your lives touch us profoundly. You show us how to live in an imperfect world.”

Recalling his parents’ long and happy marriage, Archbishop Buechlein said, “No matter how ravaged we may be physically because of illness … , no matter how weak and sick we may sometimes feel spiritually, in God’s eyes we are beautiful.

“The real, down-to-earth love of wife and husband mirrors God’s unconditional love for us,” he said. “In that sense, a faithful marriage is indeed a sacrament of God’s love for us. Even in sickness and suffering from the effects of aging, more than you folks will ever know, you jubilarians are a wonderful witness to us.”

The archbishop asked the jubilarians “to continue to be an example of a couple that prays together.”

He also asked them to “pray for our archdiocese, pray for our priests, pray for all those folks who help carry on God’s work, pray for vocations to the priesthood and religious life.”

After the Mass, St. Mary parishioners John and Eleanor Weisbach of Greensburg reflected on their 66-year marriage.

They were married on Aug. 28, 1940, at St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, and have one daughter, Shirley Niese, also a St. Mary’s parishioner, as well as two grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

“You’ve got to love one another,” John Weisbach explained, “and don’t argue too much.”

Eleanor Weisbach agreed, noting that it’s important to “try to do the best you can and get along with each other.”

St. Michael the Archangel parishioners Frederick and Marcella Marshall of Indianapolis have been married for 60 years and are charter members of their parish. They shared a kiss during the Mass after renewing their marriage vows.

The Marshalls were married on Dec. 28, 1946, at St. Mark Church in St. Paul, Minn. They have seven children—Mary Margaret Foreman, Suzanne Elble, Frederick Marshall III, Rita Delessert, Jane Marshall, Tim Marshall and Maureen Marshall-Doss—as well as 16 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

After the liturgy, Marcella Marshall said she thanks God for bringing them together. A native of Detroit, he was attending graduate school in Iowa, working on his Ph.D. in chemistry. She was studying to be an elementary education teacher, hundreds of miles away in Minnesota, when her friend introduced them during a weekend visit.

“This is the way God works,” she said. “When he was growing up, he lived on a street called Campbell. When I was growing up, I lived on a street named Marshall. Campbell is my maiden name. We got together so it’s like it was meant to be.”

Smiling, Frederick Marshall said, “I tell the fellas that the secret to a long and happy marriage is ‘Yes, dear.’ ”

Love and respect are key ingredients for a successful marriage, he added. “You have to be willing to help each other and place your spouse first above everybody else.”

“That’s what he has always done and what I’ve tried to do,” she said. “It’s been a great marriage. I have been lucky to be married to a fella who is just wonderful. We always talk everything over and come to decisions together. We have been partners forever and best friends always.” †


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