World Marriage Day – February 12, 2023
World Marriage Day is observed on the second Sunday in February. It is an opportunity to focus on building a culture of life and love that begins with supporting and promoting marriage and the family.
The day honors husbands and wives as heads of the family, for the beauty of their faithfulness, and the sacrifice and joy in daily married life. World Marriage Day highlights the promise of a marital union and the beauty of being a lawfully wedded couple under the eyes of Christ.
In 2023 World Marriage Day will be celebrated on 12th February. This year’s theme, “Marriage…one flesh, given and received” highlights the one-flesh union of husband and wife that is willed by God.
World Marriage Day was started in 1983 by the American organization, Worldwide Marriage Encounter (WWME). It is a religiously-based program designed to help married couples improve their marriage. Popularized by the Catholic Church, the purpose of World Marriage Day is to emphasize the beauty of marriage and to honor husbands and wives for their faithfulness and sacrifices.
Worldwide Marriage Encounter, has helped countless couples to strengthen their married love with good advice, support, and the love of other couples. Their priority is treasuring, fostering, supporting, and strengthening marriage and family.
In 1981, several couples from Baton Rouge, Louisiana encouraged the Mayor, the Governor, and the Bishop to proclaim Saint Valentine’s Day (February 14) as We Believe in Marriage Day. The national leadership of Worldwide Marriage Encounter adopted the idea, changed the name to World Marriage Day (WMD), and moved the date to the second Sunday in February. The first WMD celebration was held in 1983.
The purpose of WMD is to honor husband and wife as the foundation of the family which is the basic unit of society. On this day, people celebrate the beauty of the husband and wife’s faithfulness, joy, and sacrifice in daily married life. The theme for the day is “Love One Another”. It is the commandment given to us by Jesus Christ in John 15:12.
WMD is celebrated mainly by church organizations as it was originally supported by the Catholic Marriage Encounter Movement. Common events include special church services, receptions for parish members, renewal of wedding vows, essay writing contests, activities for couples, etc.
The celebration of National Marriage Week (February 7-14) in the U.S. began in 2002, originating from Marriage Week International. The observances of National Marriage Week (Feb. 7-14) and World Marriage Day (Sunday, Feb. 12) are an opportunity to focus on building a culture of life and love that begins with supporting and promoting marriage and the family.
World Marriage Day honors the sacrifices and faithfulness of husbands and wives. Catholic couples celebrate the day by attending the Sunday mass and recommitting themselves to the values of the institution of marriage.
Suggested Read: Marriage Culture in India
Tips on how to keep the flame of love burning in a marriage
- Recognize and celebrate every blessing, big or small – birthdays, anniversaries, good health, God-moments, and plain-sailing days.
- Stay ‘attractive’ and ‘special’ to each other; remember the most endearing qualities that first attracted you.
- Express your love and commitment using each other’s language of love.
- Do things as a couple; enjoy date nights without talking about work and home matters, exercise together, and pray for each other as a couple.
- Create new experiences, try new hobbies or do new things together; very often they become cherished memories.
- Join the Marriage Encounter weekend to enrich your couple’s relationship with practical tools.
- Serve as a couple in a church ministry or in the community.
- May the married couples live out their vocation with enthusiasm, and remain joyful and courageous even amidst challenges.
Suggested Read: Love vs. Arranged Marriage