Dane & Anne McCarthy

Our story begins with our wedding in August 1962. We were a young couple full of hopes and dreams for our future.

Fast forward 18 years and 4 children later- we still loved one another but our relationship was bogged down in frustration with time demands, different parenting styles, sexual expectations, etc. We silently asked – “Is this all there is?”

One Sunday at our suburban parish a couple spoke to the congregation about a Weekend for couples “to help make a good marriage great.” We needed help and agreed to try it.

The Marriage Encounter weekend was a revelation. We identified with the experiences shared by the 3 presentation couples and a Redemptorist priest. Through dialogue in the privacy of our room we shared our deepest fears and hopes as never before and grew closer.

Our faith came alive as we realized that we are sacrament and a sign to our church and that we were called to share the good news with others through the marriage ministry.

Since that weekend in 1980 we’ve stepped into the deep many times – first as a shaky presenting couple, then in different leadership roles at the national and international level. We became part of our parish marriage prep program, served as Eucharistic ministers and became more active in reaching out to the less fortunate- living out our faith. We’ve made many friendships as we continue to journey and be supported by couples and priests with similar values from several diverse cultures.

We love our parish too, where we are enriched by the sacraments and the prayerful support of the community. We still have our struggles- family issues, health problems and the challenges of our complicated world. But our faith is strong and our marriage sacrament continues to be a blessing for us.