THE biblical account of the wedding feast in Cana has a new dimension for Brisbane WYD11 pilgrims Jenny and Geoff Knight.
It was in Cana the Brisbane duo renewed their wedding vows, first made in St Stephen’s Cathedral on June 27, 2009.
Jenny and Geoff were part of Archbishop John Bathersby’s WYD11 pilgrimage group first travelling to the Holy Land on the way to Madrid.
“Originally we joked that it would be funny to go to Cana and have a marriage ceremony but I never actually thought it would happen,” Jenny, who teaches at All Hallows’ School, Brisbane, said.
The Knights were also spiritually led by Southport associate pastor Fr Jason Middleton, who presided at the renewal, and Deacon Matt Ransom, of Cairns.
“They played a massive role in organising the marriage renewal,” Jenny said, with Geoff setting the scene. “At one of the (WYD11) formation days we found out that we would visit the Cana where Jesus performed his first miracle,” he said. “We found out that the church we would be visiting offered the opportunity to renew your marriage vows.
“At the time Jenny wasn’t too keen – she felt that we had only been married for two years and the renewal of marriage vows was for couples who had been married for at least 20 years.
“(But) when we reached the church in Cana, Deacon Matt said to me that Jenny and I should renew our marriage vows and Fr Jason agreed to lead us through our marriage renewal.
“Being the only married couple in our pilgrimage, Jenny could hardly refuse, so I was able to have my wish.”
Geoff said renewing their wedding vows was the “highlight” of being in the Holy Land and his wife agreed.
“Being in Cana, where Jesus performed his first miracle at the wedding, made us realise how special the Sacrament of Marriage was to him,” Jenny said.
“We now feel like we have been especially blessed.”
The duo was also struck by their visit to the River Jordan and is hopeful to take their “future children” there.
“When we visited the baptismal site (of Jesus) at the River Jordan we actually took some water with the hope that one day our children can be baptised with that very special water,” Jenny said.
“I hope that through these acts, we will continue to recognise and remember Jesus and his message in our lives.”
Jenny was baptised as part of the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) in St Stephen’s Cathedral some years ago.
“I wasn’t baptised as a child,” she said.
“But I felt that there was something bigger than me and I started to look for guidance in scripture.”
Further guided by St Stephen’s Cathedral dean Fr Ken Howell, who presided at their Nuptial Mass in 2009, Jenny continued to speak of the importance of active faith.
“We decided on a Nuptial Mass for our wedding because we felt that it was important to feel Jesus’ presence with a Eucharist celebration,” she said.
“We have continued our marriage in the same vein, asking for guidance constantly. “Each week we reflect on the Mass readings and see how we can incorporate Jesus’ message into our own relationship.
“We know that marriage is sometimes not the easiest journey but we find comfort in … in the Gospels.
“Ultimately, we believe that it is important for us individually and as a couple to continue to develop our faith so that we have a strong foundation to build on when we are responsible for our own children.”
Since their visit to the Holy Land the couple agree “the Bible comes (more) alive” and they remain grateful to their parish priest Fr Peter Conroy, from Yeronga parish, who encouraged them to attend WYD11 following Jenny’s “wonderful experience” of WYD08 in Sydney.
“Through our visit to the Holy Land we were able to experience walking in the steps of Jesus, an experience we were able to share together,” Geoff said.
“I hope that when we have a family we will be able to take the same trip and share the experience as a family.”
Geoff and Jenny first met when she worked for a food chain in Brisbane city where her husband-to-be would often visit.
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