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Revs. Daughtry renew their vows

YACINE SIMPORÉ Special to the AmNews | 5/23/2012, 6:46 p.m.

On Saturday, May 19, members of the glorious House of the Lord Church community celebrated the 50th wedding anniversary, as well as their renewal of vows, of the Rev. Dr. Herbert Daughtry and his wife, the Rev. Dr. Karen Daughtry.

Over the last 30 years, they have been a leading couple of community leaders and activists in Brooklyn, advocating against police brutality and for issues concerning the African-American community.

"My wife and I have been activists and got our family involved in our commitment to serve the community. I am happy to have lived long enough to make these accomplishments," the 81-year-old Herbert Daughtry said to the AmNews.

While about 100 church faithful attended the event to celebrate the love that has been a pillar for the church and the community, Daughtry did not miss the chance to thank them. "I would not have made 50 years of marriage without the love of these people," he said.

When he saw Karen singing in a church choir 50 years ago, Daughtry admits it was love at the first sight. "I said to myself that I had to talk to that sister!" he said.

Unfortunately, they couldn't meet on that day and Karen left without giving him any name or address.

It took determination and time for Daughtry to do some research to find her, to get connected with her again. But he said he knew "it was worth it!"

He eventually got in touch with her through her cousin. "After a week, we met each other--we were so connected."

After long prayers to seek God's approval, the two were engaged nine months later and got married in 1962.

Deborah Daughtry, a niece, was the only one at last month's event who had attended the wedding 50 years ago. "I was 3 years old and I do remember that day," she described. "I had to get dressed up and carry a basket of flowers. This marriage is showing people who want to get married that it is possible."

When asked for the secret of such a long-lasting marriage, Daughtry told the AmNews, "A marriage has to find a cause bigger than the individuals involved in it. Marriages break up when partners are consumed with each other. There is a saying that goes that the happiest people are those who have found a cause bigger than themselves in which they can give themselves and be committed. What is true for individuals is true for marriages, too.

"For my wife and me, the cause has been the love of God. We got married not only for ourselves but also to serve people."