Thursday, September 4, 2008
Weddings are such happy occasions! ! !
Ok, lame blogger that I am, my friend told me that when you load the photos you load what you want last to be first, etc. but it didn't work that way, so this is backwards, but you don't care, do you?? This beautiful bride is our recently released missionary, Sister Nancy Mpemba. She was an incredible missionary (do you remember I posted about her with her release photo?) and this is her handsome husband, Willy. Just weeks after she was released, they were married at the Ngaliema Stake center. This is what I wrote about the wedding in my journal.
We met in the chapel and waited. There was a choir of young people who were singing hymns while we waited. The girls all had red shirts and black skirts on and the boys had white shirts, black pants and ties. They looked really great (a bit better than they sounded, but what they lacked in harmony, they more than made up with enthusiasm and joy! ! !) Then the back curtains opened and on one side Willy came up in a black suit with a lavender shirt—very stylish looking. On the other side was Soeur Mpemba in a beautiful white wedding gown with her face fully veiled. It was rather low in the back, but she had her garments on and so it was great! ! They walked slowly and sedately up the two aisles—there were several “attendants” for both of them—four girls in matching dresses---two were long and the other two shorter skirts—a man with Willy and a lady with Soeur Mpemba—I’m not sure what their relationship was. They came up the aisle, and at the front they met and the attendants took their seats on the front row and Willy and Soeur Mpemba went to the front and turned and sat facing the audience. Oh, yeah---Soeur Mpemba’s veil was very long or the dress had a train, I’m not sure which, that was carried by this darling little sister of Willy. She was also dressed all in white and she also had a veil over her face. I’m not sure when her veil was changed, but after the ceremony her veil was also pushed back over the back of her hair.
This is the photo of the attendants leading them into the cultural hall after the ceremony! ! This is when it got really fun! ! !
This is the quote from my journal about this adorable couple--he is the Patriarch of the Ngaliema Stake:
Several of the priesthood in their wards and stakes spoke about marriage and family—all wonderful talks and very sweet. The final speaker was the patriarch from the Ngaliema stake. Just a side light about him—several months ago Don asked him how he was getting along with giving some of our missionaries their patriarchal blessings. He said that he had given all the blessings, but the stake didn’t have sufficient money for batteries for his recorder, nor paper for him to print the blessings out on. Don immediately got some batteries and paper for him and he was extremely grateful! ! ! So back to his talk. He is this darling man—greying hair with huge glasses! ! He told the story of how he and his wife were first “culturally” married---50 years ago this December. Then he told us how many months, weeks and days that they had been married. Then he told that they had been “civilly” married several years after that—then told us how many years, months, weeks and days they had been married civilly. Then he said that they joined the Catholic church and were married again! ! and repeated how many years, months, weeks and days they had been married. Finally he told of their marriage in the temple! ! ! and repeated the same about length of marriage. Then he called his wife up to stand before everyone and expressed his love and admiration for her. (something very unusual for Africans to do in public! ! ). She has born him 14 children—2 have died, but 12 are living---6 of them are married and they have a goodly number of grandchildren. They were so darling and cute together.
And here is the wonderful photo of the beautiful couple! ! They are saving their money so that they can go to the temple soon. We hope that it is very soon. He is a counselor in the Bishopric in his ward and she will be an asset wherever she serves. This is why the church is growing so magnificently here in Congo--dedicated and wonderful young people like this who love the Lord and want to serve Him all of their days! !