A Summerland couple have accomplished something that very few others have or ever will.
Joe and Bessie Beitel have been married for 75 years.
They met through the matchmaking efforts of family members.
They courted for one year and were married in 1938. Three years later they left the farm in Saskatchewan and moved to B.C.
Over the next 41 years they raised three children and moved to several different communities throughout the province, where Joe served as pastor and built new parsonages. Bessie worked in retail.
They retired in 1982 and moved to Summerland in 1999.
As in every couple’s life, there were some rough times.
“When we first got married we were poor,” Joe explained. They also experienced tragedy when they lost their son in an accidental death.
The Beitels said their faith sustained them during difficult times.
“We were serving the Lord,” Bessie said.
“It gave us a hope. The future looked so much brighter even though there were difficult years. Our faith is really what kept us going and we had good health, both of us,” Joe added.
They also learned to manage disputes without hurting one another.
“We never went to sleep at night without saying we were sorry or making up,” Bessie said.
Neither one of them ever would have considered separating. Joe referred to what they shared as a “steadfast love,” saying, “We just had a love for each other that kept us together and here we are after all these years.”
And what do they look forward to? Joe answered, “We have a hope that the next life is going to be heaven,” Joe said. “The future is as bright as the promises of God. Everything will turn out okay.”
When asked if they would still be together they responded with, “Yes, we believe so.”
If you know a positive story about someone from our community, contact Carla McLeod at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the Summerland Review newsroom at 250-494-5406.