By Beatrice Nakibuuka
Samuel and Grace Mwesigwa dated for six months before they tied the knot. This might sound like such a hurried decision but the couple believe that learning more about someone is a continuous process and cannot be done within a year or even more. Samuel says that a marriage partner is not a university course that you are learning for several years.
He says, “There are many things you may not see even when you date the person for a long time only for you to find out after you are married. Therefore, I do not think taking long helps because there is no specific amount of time that can guarantee that you have fully known your partner.”
How they met
Traditionally, people think that a couple should date for at least a year before they get married but according to Grace, there is no formula when it comes to marriage. So when the two of you have mutual understanding of each other and communication, then marriage is always possible. She admits that at some point she felt there was a bit of haste but she did not pay attention to it.
Samuel tells about the time they first met.
“I first met Grace at a friend’s introduction in December last year where she acted as a treasurer,” Samuel recalls. I was attracted by her calmness and she was very presentable but I thought she was a wife to the chairperson of the meeting. A few days later, I met her again when I went to visit the friend who was going to introduce. She jokingly said that I could be the answered prayer. I took her contact because for sure, I wanted to marry her. Later, at the friend’s introduction which was in January, she agreed to take photos with me. This is where everything started.”
Samuel then put Grace’s photo on his status. This got many people writing into his inbox asking who she was and commenting on how they were are a perfect match.
“After taking photos we kept on talking. I didn’t ask her immediately to marry me but I made sure I talked about it to make her prepared for when I would pop the question,” Samuel says.
Grace was indeed shocked when Samuel eventually let his intentions be known. “I was first surprised about the whole idea by the way. Our plan was at first settling everything next year, but when he suggested we bring it closer I believed it was God speaking since His timing is always the best. I even thought it was a joke yet it was serious. Everything happened so fast and before I realised, we were preparing for a wedding,” she comments.
As might be expected, there was a lot of criticism from friends and some family members but the Mwesigwas knew what they wanted and they knew the marriage was about them and not any other person. Once they thought they were ready, they took the next step.
Grace had always prayed for a man that would agree to go to her home and who loves God. While they dated, she realised he was the answer to her prayer. The rest of his behavior, she said, she would know as time went by.
“He is very focused and calm unlike me who is very talkative. We automatically connected and this is what is important. Once you have a mutual agreement about the things you want, there is no need to delay. Sometimes the more you delay, the more likely the devil is to come into your way so we did not give him a chance,” Grace says.
Two-week wedding preparation
Grace’s parents were okay with their children’s hastened decision to get married but Samuel’s parents at first complained that it was such short notice. Later however, they became supportive for the good of their children.
The couple then informed the church, Pentecostal Assemblies of God Tororo, about their intention to get married and when they realised there was a chance for a “scientific” wedding where the costs would be as low, they jumped on that opportunity.
Because Samuel and Grace wanted to get married as soon as possible, they decided they would have the introduction ceremony much later after the wedding.
“We wanted the introduction later when the lockdown is lifted so that we have a big ceremony to accommodate all our friends and family that missed the wedding,” Samuel explains when asked why they decided to skip the traditional ceremony.
They then had a pre-visit on June 18, 2020 where Samuel visited Grace’s parents. It was his first time to meet and be made known to them. During the meeting, it was agreed on what Samuel’s family would take for the introduction ceremony later. Samuel also officially proposed to Grace that day before her parents and it was obviously a “yes” from her. Her parents then gave consent.
He says, “We then informed the church so they started making the announcements online using the church’s social media platforms after a pre-visit to her parents who gave us consent letters on June 18, 2020.”
The people that the couple chose to be part of the organising committee were actually supposed to attend the wedding and also play a role. Also, Samuel recalls being part of many of his friends’ wedding meetings so he was in touch and knew which service providers to contact for whatever service they needed.
When it came to the counselling, the couple had two sessions because time was not on their side but they were given room to always go back to their pastor in case they had anything they wanted to get clarity about.
Breaking down the budget
The couple spent Shs2m on their wedding and had a limited number of people even at the reception. The Mwesigwas have a friend that deals in bridal wear so Grace hired her wedding gown and changing dress (the gown was off white and changing dress was white. This is because Sam was dressed in a white jacket throughout) at Shs200,000. The suit and shoes for the groom cost Shs250,000.
On July 1st the two were married at the church and their reception was in a hotel room at Meritoria Hotel Tororo. The room was hired at Shs80,000. The décor cost Shs250,000. As for the photography, Samuel had a friend whom he gave a day’s facilitation of Shs60,000.
The marriage certificate cost Shs150,000; the cake Shs230,000; and transport Shs150,000. The most expensive item for the couple was the food that cost them Shs400,000.
One of the best memories that Grace cherishes was when she was walking into church with her father. For Samuel, it was the time they were exchanging vows.
Asked how things are going, almost two months into the marriage, Samuel says, “We are enjoying each other’s companionship because she is very talkative and lively.”
- Bride: Grace Nyachangala
- Groom: Samuel Mwesigwa
- Date: July 1, 2020
- Theme colours: Peach and White
- Main Celebrant: Dr David Omara
- Church: Pentecostal Assemblies of God Tororo
- Reception: Meritoria Hotel Tororo
- Number of guests: 30