Victor and Jane Law were married at Saints Mary and David’s Church in Buccleuch Road in 1966.
And for a large portion of the time since they have been an integral part of church life.
Their stellar contribution was rewarded last Sunday when Archbishop Cushley of St Andrews and Edinburgh bestowed the Archdiocesan Medal for Outstanding Service to the couple.
He said: “It is not only a pleasure but an honour for me to come and, in the name of the Archdiocese, salute the good work of men and women such as Vic and Jane, who have dedicated so much of their lives to serving the local church.
“It has been clear from the celebrations here today – and the smiles on everybody’s faces – just how pleased people here are to see Vic and Jane honoured in this way.”
Victor, 82, and his 75-year-old wife are both Teries, born and bred in the Borders town.
Their marriage in 1966 took place in the same year that Victor converted to Catholicism.
Since then they have together assisted successive generations of local priests in the mission of bringing the Gospel to the people of Hawick.
Father Jeremy Milne, parish administrator, said: “Vic and Jane have been involved in so many aspects of parish life – marriage preparation, cleaning the church, parish finances, sacristan duties and, even, as clerk of works – they have always been so willing to help and support the local priest, they always go the extra mile, they are outstanding servants of this parish.”
Jane said: “I’m still very shaky from the events of today, it’s been amazing. It’s been a pleasure and a privilege to serve the priest at Holy Mass over so many years, it’s been our life and we’ve done it for the love of doing it, for the love of the Faith, for the love of Christ.”
Vic added: “We weren’t expecting any of this – all we’ve done is serve the parish and the priest, it’s never been for fame or fortune. I’ve enjoyed life as a Catholic very much, it’s a good way to live your life.”
The Archdiocesan Medal for Outstanding Service to the Church was established in 1975 by Cardinal Gordon Joseph Gray, Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh and former parish priest of Hawick (1941-47). On average, only two medals are awarded each year for “outstanding voluntary service” to the Church at a local level.