Sunday, March 16, 2008

Knock Marriage Bureau still popular

The Knock Marriage Bureau, which is celebrating its fortieth anniversary this year, was responsible for 14 marriages in 2007, bringing to a total of 860 marriages clocked up by people introduced through the service since it was launched in 1968.

The Bureau's report for 2007 says that since its foundation it has processed 34,630 enquiries, while 9,730 men and 7,390 women completed application questionnaires and 16,747 couples were introduced to one another though its service.

Men applicants outnumbered women and 139 of them - including three widowers - completed application forms in 2007

They spanned all age groups and included people in their twenties as well as five over 60.

11 were aged between 26 and 30, 55 between 30 and 40, 51 were in their forties and 17 in their fifties.

Of the 112 women, who signed up with the Bureau, 103 were single and nine were widows.

Ten of them were under 30, 40 of them were in the 30s' age bracket and 38 were in their forties.

Eleven women in their fifties and six in their sixties applied to the Bureau to help them find partners.

In terms of backgrounds, the bureau is proving particularly popular with industrial workers, professionals and farmers, and 47 applicants citing those as their professions.

66 of those who signed up described themselves as industrial workers, 64 who called themselves 'professionals' and 47 farmers.

Nineteen teachers, twelve businessmen, ten technicians, eighteen clerks; five self-employed people were also included.

Since 1968, 280 of the men who eventually got married after being introduced to potential spouses were farmers, while 175 of the women who met husbands were nurses.

The Bureau, which is authorised by the Archbishop of Tuam and the bishops of the other Connacht dioceses, was established in 1968 under the patronage of Our Lady Of Knock to help Catholics to meet suitable prospective marriage partners.

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