Can you tell us a little about yourself & your wife?
My name is Paul and I work for co-ordinating basket buying for Artisans and Adventurers in Kenya. As I grew older I felt I needed to have a solid relationship and wanted to get married but I was finding it hard to find someone with whom I could communicate with and share the same dreams with. As a committed Christian I looked to my religion to help me and stop searching. I drew comfort from passages in the bible and put my trust a higher power. My belief was rewarded and I met my wife Sharon. Sharon is also a born-again Christian. When we first met and I asked her if she was married her answer was “Yes, and I am in a strong relationship with Jesus Christ.” Deep down in my heart I felt so much joy from her answer. She had also prayed in a similar fashion asking God for a suitable husband. We felt we had found each other and it was a fantastic realisation that made both of us so very happy.
How did you meet?
We met in a small church in our village in Kenya. She was doing her Christian fellowship and was ministering to the youths . When I asked my wife for hand in marriage she didn’t answer me immediately she went on fasting and praying to make sure she had confirmation three times from God I supported her through fasting and prayers and gave her time to seek the answers she required.
How was it planning your wedding?
Was there anything that was particularly important for you to have/do on your wedding day?
Yes the most important thing we wanted to do on our wedding day was to let anyone come and see what the lord had done in bringing us together. We invited a lot of people including those less fortunate than us, orphans and old people and gave them a day and feast to remember. They witnessed our happiness and union. There were so many happy people at our wedding and it gave us both such joy and pride to see this. I also wanted so much to have my mother, Catherine Chao, on my wedding but sadly she had passed a few months earlier. She so much wanted to see me married and happy. She passed away just a month before going to do the dowry payment at my wife’s home. She was my strength and guided me through life, but I know she was watching me closely on my day and celebrating our happiness with us.
Paul and his Mum, Catherine
Are there any Kenyan wedding traditions?
We have different customs that have to be practiced according to each tribe here in Kenya so the wedding process is long and costly. Traditional weddings vary depending on which tribe you marry from. As for me, I am Taita and I married from a Kamba tribe which involves family tradition of visiting the parents and getting dowry proposals, engagement party and dowry payments.
What was your favourite part of the day?
The part where I got to kiss my wife after we were married. I had waited for too long for that and was so excited on that morning drive with my groomsmen and my family to my wife’s home to pick her up so we can go to the church. She looked so radiant and beautiful in the sunlight and I was blown away by how my future would be spent which such a wonderful woman.
What hopes do you have for your future?
Our honeymoon we spent it in Mombassa and although we didn't have enough money for a honeymoon a very good friend and and her son payed for our hotel food and drinks for an extra 2 nights. We were only going for 1 night so 3 nights was the most beautiful honeymoon for us. Our future plans is to help our community by hopefully opening a home for the needy children and take care of orphans. As our Faith is very important to us whatever we do in our future life together we feel needs to take into consideration those less fortunate than us.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
I would just like to share that no matter how hard your life is there is someone out there to share it with and even though I was so sad that day that my mum could not be with me on this, the happiest day of my life, I know she is with me in spirit every day.