It’s Our 50th Wedding Anniversary

“He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.” (1 Thessalonians 5:24 NKJV)


The Big 5-0.

5 Decades.

A Half Century.

As a bride, I had no idea. I thought people who had been married five years were already old. 

I recognize how rare it is, to hit a 50th wedding anniversary. Many of my friends will never hit it although they would have wanted to. Truncated by the death of a spouse or an unfortunate divorce, many marriages end before they reach the big 5-0.  

And you don’t need to remind me that one cannot be a spring chicken or even try to pass off as such after five decades hang around the waist like a rubber tire. 

Our early years in Italy with just the three girls.

A report from the Census Bureau cites that only six percent of American couples make it to their 50th Anniversary. According to one poll, over 90% of Americans, when asked, thought the 50-year-mark was a great accomplishment. However, another six percent felt like spouses must have a very boring life to make it that long.

Hitting five decades of marriage deserves a bit of celebration. Perhaps less for us, the imperfect hang-on-ers, but rather to honor the grace and kindness of a Loving Father who kept us together for so long. It’s a golden privilege. 

To the skeptic with the idea that life with the same mate year after year is boring, let me enlighten you. Life with the same spouse for fifty years attests to one another’s creativity, stubbornness, sizzle-ability, love, perseverance, and commitment. It makes passing decades together rich and fulfilling, and pretty much never boring. Hitting five decades of marriage deserves a bit of celebration Share on X

Stick-to-it-ive-ness adds layers and layers of history, shared experiences, trust, security, tenacity and resilience.   

I set out to make a list marking the 50th Anniversary… you know, something like fifty reasons I’m glad we didn’t quit. Or, fifty things I’m thankful for about my husband. Fifty ways to celebrate our marriage. Fifty reasons I would still choose him. And so on.  

Our four children have been an amazing blessing.

But none of them really captured my feelings. They don’t convey fifty years of being together when we wake up and when we go to bed. A list can’t summarize the race or the grueling plod, the fleeting time or the long arduous stretches. Lists fall short in describing exhilarating joys and remembering deep sorrows.

The truth is, we would not be celebrating these years but for Jesus in our marriage. Life tested us. Not once, not twice, not even fifty times, but innumerable times. Over and over again. 

Jesus held us together. 

We’ve walked miles cooling off, muttering out our issues, walking babies, cleaning messes, worrying over, and living with precious little lives to adulthood. We’ve laughed till we hurt, and hurt till we cried. The promise we made before God and others, we continue to choose fresh and new each day. “He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.” 1 Thessalonians 5:25 NKJV Share on X

So, to commemorate the years, we’ve pledged to turn the focus on Him. 

In the Old Testament, God’s people celebrated the fiftieth year, calling it the Jubilee year. They turned their attention onto God the Provider. They practiced trust, planned renewal, rested, released debts and restored relationships.  

  And God turned hearts His direction. am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan and to be your God.” (Leviticus 25:38 NKJV)

Our family numbering 26 gathering in November for Thanksgiving and Phil’s 70th.

Jubilee was, above all, a year for honoring God and celebrating Him.

And that is what we want to do. We plan to take a bit of time to reflect on each ten years and celebrate the goodness of the Lord in every decade. We want to remember and praise Him for the waters He parted, prayers He answered, and the gift of generations.   

He put many of you into our path. You’ve lifted us, walked with us in the valley of the shadow of death, laughed and cried with us. We realize He brought your help when we needed it most. 

Jesus knew all along what He was doing. Every step along our path.  

He saw it all. Two high school sweethearts who stood at the altar on June 6, 1974. 

Decade by decade He walked alongside, nurturing, comforting, gently bringing us back to His feet.   

Like we did years ago, we will promise again to love, honor, and be faithful to each other till death do us part. We will kneel like we did fifty years ago when we said, “I do,” and pledge ourselves to one another again. 

Because, it’s not finished yet. 

Boring? I don’t think so. 

43 Replies

  1. Barbara Latta Reply

    Happy anniversary, Sylvia. 50 years is a god-given milestone. My husband and I celebrated 48 this year. One of his jobs as an Intelligence Analyst has been to teach other military members. The younger ones always looked at him with wise eyes of amazement when he mentioned how long we had been married. It’s like that’s an anomaly. Thanks for sharing your family photos. Yes, you are blessed. May your celebration be amazing.

  2. Ann Newcomer Reply

    Congratulations!! What a testament to God’s grace at work in creating one flesh from two. We are a little bit behind you (46 yrs this month), but know the treasure, pain, & joy in a long-term marriage. ❤️
    May the Lord grant you many more years together, hand in hand, “looking to Jesus”!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Ann, I appreciate your comment. Our years are most certainly held in His hand, and I love the picture of looking to Jesus. Thank you!

    • Mary Jane Casablanca Reply

      Happy Anniversary! Cas and I will celebrate 63 years of marriage in August and we are very blessed and thankful for each day we have together. Praying you have many more ahead of you!

  3. Adele Reply

    Happy Anniversary! You have a beautiful family.

  4. Dwight Lehman Reply

    Congratulations Phil & Sylvia, enjoy this “moment”! Thank you for your resolve that it’s all about Jesus these 50 years.

  5. Rosalie Huxman Reply

    Happy anniversary! We passed 53 years last month. Yes, it is God walking with us all these years through the good and the not so good that has made this possible. Some things we did not choose but He led us through them and we are ever so grateful for His leading even then. May we be found faithful!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Wow! 53! Wonderful! Yes, the journey has been His, and may we be found faithful!

  6. Katherine Pasour Reply

    Congratulations! What a beautiful message. I love the pictures and your touching tribute to your life together. It’s wonderful that your family is still close and gathers together. Your 50 years have created a lasting legacy.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thanks Katherine! It doesn’t seem possible, but I am so grateful.

  7. Jeannie Waters Reply

    Sylvia, thank you for this post which honors God and your marriage. Enjoy the celebration, the jubilee!

  8. Don Pahl Reply

    Congratulations, Sylvia and Phil, on 50 boring, incredible years!
    Rosi and I hit 51 two days later.
    God is most certainly faithful ‼️

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      And I am quite sure your 51 has not been boring either. Congratulations!

  9. Rebecca Powell Reply

    Happy 50th Anniversary, Sylvia and Phil! What a beautiful family you have…many reasons to celebrate. Love the pictures and your blog. God’s continued blessings.

  10. Roy and Karla Libby Reply

    You’re so right. One the day you married we had just celebrated our 11th anniversary. So many things have happened since them, but we too praise our loving Lord for the paths we have trod. We praise the Lord for you and for your transparency. With love

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thanks so much Roy and Karla. We consider you both wonderful examples!

  11. Sharon Reply

    How lovely … praising God with you for His sustaining & life giving Presence in your lives! We are a decade behind you:)

  12. Delphia Wiebe Reply

    Congratulations on your 50th anniversary! Thank you for sharing these thoughts with us. Thank you for your life of service. Thank you for continuing to minister through your words. You are indeed a “wordsmith”.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Delphia, I’m honored and really love hearing from you. Thank you so very much.

  13. Tricia Caldbeck Reply

    Oh wow, 50 years! That is wonderful ! That is such an amazing symbol that 50 years is the year of Jubilee in the Jewish calendar – not an accident, and so meaningful! I pray for you both an extra outpouring of joy in the next season of years beyond anything you have experienced yet! 🙏

  14. Gladys King Reply

    Congratulations Phil and Sylvia,
    What a wonderful testamony of God’s great faithfulness and your daily walk in His strength and love ❤️
    Your sincere words encourage me ~~~thanks be to Father God and you

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thanks Gladys. Yes, God’s faithfulness is unwavering. So much to thank Him for!

  15. Joyce Nelson Reply

    Happy anniversary guys! We’ve known you since you were students at Grace College of the Bible. I believe we were one of the first to support you when you went to Italy. Supported you even after you came home to KC. We remember so well our trip to Italy to help you at Puto, & all the laughs we had at our expense , of the daily living that you experienced everyday. Thank you for those memories! Also the memories of helping you& charity & Jeremy when she was at Madonna & QLI.. sSorry we’re not living close enough that we could share this date with you. On our 50th you made the trip to help us celebrate our special day. You both have been a model for younger couples to copy. Praise the Lord! May you have many more memories because of the Lord’s blessings. We love you!!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      You were one of the first to support when we went to Italy and we appreciate you both so much! You have been a part of our lives, walked with us, prayed with us, cried and laughed with us. Thank you. We consider your example a wonderful model as we keep going!

  16. Kim McDowall Reply

    Boring? I hardly think so! We are on year 36. Nothing boring about it!! My sister & her husband hit 50 2 years ago & I was the flower girl at their wedding. I was only 7 and I thought my big sister’s wedding was magical…. My parents were married 56 years until mom’s death 22 years ago and dad is still alive at the ripe old age of 99!

    Congratulations to you both and many more years as the Lord wills. I look up to you both as strong vessels greatly used by our Lord & Savior!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thanks Kim. You are both such a blessing to us as well! I appreciate so much hearing from you!

  17. Bob and Fritzie Strong Reply

    As we read this, we’re celebrating 56 years of marriage (6.8.’68) – more than 40 of them serving the Lord in Uruguay and Argentina. The last ten years have been the best!!! Congratulations to you both!

  18. Charla Reply

    What a wonderful tribute to God, your love for Him and one another, and to “Stick-to-it-ive-ness”. 🙂 Thank you for sharing your joy with us.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thank you Charla! God has been good and gracious. We are so grateful.

  19. Brenda Griswold Reply

    I saved this to read when I had time and did this morning! Happy Anniversary a bit late, but so excited for you to celebrate 50 years together! This inspires me to hang in there for at least 8 more! Lol! It is amazing looking back at how God was always the glue that kept my husband and I together. We would have killed each other otherwise. At the same time, so many, many blessings through the years! I love your family pictures. Your faith shared with your family has now grown as they too live for Christ. What a testimony for the Lord your 50 years has been! All praise to our God the Father! All praise to the son! All praise to the Holy Spirit! All praise to three in one! God has done great things through you both! Your testimony will continue! Now reach for the 60th! Love you!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      All praise to our God the Father! All praise to the son! All praise to the Holy Spirit! All praise to three in one!
      That about sums it up, doesn’t it! Thank you Brenda. It has been a journey and I’m pretty sure it is for everyone. God has been gracious and faithful…and He will continue to be.

  20. Lois S. Reply

    I clearly remember your wedding. Especially that you had a lovely sermon about being of one mind, glorifying God with one voice, and “accept[ing] one another, just as Christ also accepted us, for the glory of God.”

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      I can hardly believe you remember that!! Romans 15:6. Phil’s dad and my brother James officiated. I just love that you remember! Thanks Lois.

  21. J.D. Wininger Reply

    Apologies for missing your and Mr. Phil’s special day, but please know that when I say your email come in, I stopped and offered a prayer for a wonderful celebration day, filled with joy, love, and family.