Marriage retreat will encourage couples to ‘Go to Joseph’

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Married couples throughout the Diocese of Nashville will be encouraged to “Go to Joseph” during St. Mary of the Seven Sorrows Church’s “Three to STAY Married” retreat at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 29, in the Cathedral of the Incarnation’s Fleming Center in downtown Nashville.  

The retreat is to meant “to give married couples a shot in the arm to live their marriage well and renew their enthusiasm for their vocation,” said Kathleen Cordell, event coordinator and parish administrative assistant for St. Mary.  

Retreat organizers hope “that couples get the new year off to the right start by putting the importance on their commitment to their spouse,” Cordell said. “As married couples, that should be our top priority to live out the vocation of marriage well.”  

The retreat, which has been offered annually for more than a decade, raises money for its partner retreat, “Three to GET Married,” for engaged couples, which “presents the fullness of Church teaching on marriage and family life and helps lay a firm foundation for a strong, happy, Christ-centered marriage,” according to the event website.  

“The marriage retreat started as an expansion of the engagement retreat,” Cordell said. The marriage retreat was like “coming back annually for a booster, and we’ll have couples who have been married anywhere from two months to 60 years.”   

Father Jayd Neely, pastor of St. Mary of the Seven Sorrows, will serve as the evening’s keynote speaker, which will focus on the “Go to Joseph” theme to encourage participants to “go to St. Joseph as the perfect model for living the vocation of marriage with faith, trust, strength and joy,” according to the event invitation.   

“In his Apostolic letter proclaiming the Year of St. Joseph, Pope Francis shows how: ‘Popular trust in St. Joseph is seen in the expression ‘Go to Joseph,’ which evokes the famine in Egypt, when the Egyptians begged Pharoah for bread. He in turn replied: ‘Go to Joseph; what he says to you, do’ (Genesis 41:55),” Father Neely quoted from the letter. “Pharoah was referring to Joseph the son of Jacob, who was sold into slavery because of the jealousy of his brothers … and who – according to the biblical account – subsequently became viceroy of Egypt.” 

“In 1870, Pope Pius IX solemnly declared St. Joseph the Patron of the Catholic Church, explaining: ‘As almighty God appointed Joseph, son of the patriarch Jacob, over all the land of Egypt to save grain for the people, so, when the fullness of time had come, and he was about to send to earth his only-begotten Son, the Savior of the world, he chose another Joseph, of whom the first had been the type, and he made him the lord and chief of his household and possessions, the guardian of his choicest treasures,’” Father Neely continued, quoting Pope Pius IX’s Quemadmodum Deus decree, announcing the declaration.  

The cost of the retreat is $75 per married couple or $300 per table, which accommodates up to eight people. Advanced registration is required and due by Monday, Jan 24.  

For more information or to sign up, visit  

For questions, e-mail Cordell at  

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