By Zakariya Musa
Tom and Janet Crago, Church of the Brethren volunteers in Nigeria, celebrate their 48th year of marriage at the Annex Office of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria), located in north central Nigeria where they assist the Brethren who relocated from the church’s headquarters at Kwarhi in Adamawa State. The event took place during the morning devotion of the EYN headquarters staff.
EYN president Dr. Samuel Dali commended the couple for the occasion he said was worth imitating by pastors and non-pastors who witnessed it. “We are happy that you agree to celebrate this time here with us in Nigeria,” he said.
Jim Mitchell, who is another Church of the Brethren volunteer currently working in Nigeria, officiated for the celebration of joy amidst pastors, officials, and staff of EYN. Some commented on the unusual celebration, where the couple restated their commitment in marriage like they did on their first day.
Josiah Dali, coordinator of the Pastoral Development Program of EYN, said, “I have learnt so many things this morning because I have not seen such before. We are going to emulate it in EYN.”
The director of Evangelism Daniel Bukar Bwala said, “Tom and Jennet’s celebration of 48 years of marriage have taught me a lot. With Mr. President, ministers, secretary, and Pastoral Development coordinator in attendance, it could now be introduced officially in EYN,” he suggested.
Markus Vashawa had this to say: “There are things women know better than men, and there are things men know better than women in marriage.”
Rose Joseph said, “We can learn from this, because it is not EYN practice.”
“God joined you together,” said Jim Mitchell, who officiated. “Every wedding is the occasion of joy. Be thankful to God for bringing you this moment.” He also prayed for the couple to remain strong and have many more years to come in love, experiencing peace and joy, and remaining faithful. “God we are witnesses, we celebrate with them.”
“In this wedding we support each other,” the Cragos said. “We had 6 of these 48 years in Nigeria, so we are somehow almost Nigerians.”
-- Zakariya Musa is on the communications staff of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria).