Fairfield, CT - John and Ann Betar, the national winners of the 2013 Longest Married Couple Project, sponsored by Worldwide Marriage Encounter (WWME), were honored here this past weekend. The Betars are married over 80 years.
“It was truly a wonderful experience to spend time with John & Ann this past weekend as we honored them for their long marriage,” said Dick & Diane Baumbach, coordinators of the WWME Longest Married Couple Project, who noted that hundreds of nominations were received for this year’s project.
The Baumbachs presented the couple with three framed certificates, one from WWME, a second - U.S. Congressional Recognition and third – an Official Statement from Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy honoring the Betars. Honors and personal gifts were to be presented by WWME U.S. Ecclesial Team, Ron & Judy Pekny and Fr. Rocky Grimard, but due to Storm Nemo – the blizzard of 2013 – and flight cancellations, they were not able to attend.
The Peknys plan to have the gifts delivered to the Betars within the next few weeks.
The Betars were married Nov. 25, 1932. John has been quoted as saying, “some people said it would never last. We showed them.” The national winners have five children, 14 grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren.
The Connecticut couple achieved the honor of being the Longest Married Couple based on nominations submitted to Worldwide Marriage Encounter beginning in October of last year. The nomination project ended on January 10th. “We realize there could be couples married longer, but we did not receive their nominations from friends or family during the nominating period,” the Baumbachs said.
Worldwide Marriage Encounter created the project to highlight marriage in America and to show young couples that marriage really can go the distance.
Worldwide Marriage Encounter has been offering weekend experiences for over 44 years and is considered the original faith-based marriage enrichment program. The programs are continually updated to keep abreast of changes in society, and WWME now offers evening and half-day programs that are presented at parishes and other church facilities. The weekend program, traditionally presented as an overnight experience at a hotel or retreat center, can also be presented at facilities where the couples return to their homes in the evenings. WWME has a presence in almost 100 countries, which makes it the largest pro-marriage movement in the world. In North America, the WWME programs are presented in English, Spanish, French, and Korean languages.
Worldwide Marriage Encounter offers married couples the opportunity to spend time together away from the busyness of the world to focus on each other. It offers tools for building and maintaining a strong, Christian marriage in today's world. To learn more about the Worldwide Marriage Encounter weekends online, go to http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?llr=tuqepibab&et=1109130883982&s=17770&e=001B_ucn4tCOMRVHZ1GUo4ugQ9Yrrb-VoNypzKhBVm7OB79wAOAjzJTuFaTW_IbC9fwjCZljcNlct4t4F11WJdbDcdqtJq6--zxC6PZNIKpsEc=" href="http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?llr=tuqepibab&et=1109130883982&s=17770&e=001B_ucn4tCOMRVHZ1GUo4ugQ9Yrrb-VoNypzKhBVm7OB79wAOAjzJTuFaTW_IbC9fwjCZljcNlct4t4F11WJdbDcdqtJq6--zxC6PZNIKpsEc=">wwme.org, or you can call 1-800-795-LOVE (English) and 1-800-599-AMOR (Spanish), or contact the WWME Office at (909) 863-9963.
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Dick & Diane Baumbach at either
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L to R – John & Ann Betar, 2013 WWME Longest Married Couple national winners, honored by Diane & Dick Baumbach, coordinators of LMC project. at granddaughters’ home in Fairfield, CT this past weekend.