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Molly ShoreBarbara and Jack Fife have always...

Molly Shore

Barbara and Jack Fife have always found time to express their love

for each other.

The Fifes, married 52 years ago on Feb. 3, were among the 10

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couples who participated in Wednesday’s annual vow-renewal ceremony

at the Spirit Works Center for Spiritual Living. The Rev. Marlene

Morris of the 400-member congregation, formerly known as the Burbank

Church of Religious Science, officiated.

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For the past five years, the Reseda couple have walked hand in

hand down the aisle to renew their vows.

Barbara, 71, credits the longevity of their marriage to shared

spiritual beliefs. “We spend as much time as we can in our church,”

she said.

Jack, 73, said renewing their vows reinforces their strong bond.

“I think [many] people give up too soon, and we have never given up,”

he said.

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The event, similar to a wedding ceremony, began with processional

music as the couples walked down the aisle and sat in the front rows.

After a short sermon, they stood again and exchanged vows.

When the ceremony concluded, the celebration continued in the

church lobby, where the celebrants were toasted with champagne and

cake.

Morris has conducted the vow- renewal ceremony for the past 17

years, with hundreds of couples. Because it is a romantic event,

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Morris said the ceremony is always scheduled just before Valentine’s

Day.

Participants do not have to belong to the church, and couples --

heterosexual and gay -- who are in committed relationships are

welcomed at the vow renewals, she said.

“The original idea came as a way of helping people to see how

important it is to recommit and say, ‘I love you,’” Morris said.

One of the couples who previously participated in vow renewals had

only been married for a week.

“I thought it was cute that they already wanted to recommit,”

Morris said.


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