Couple’s hard decision of putting off wedding
Eric Wainaina @EWainaina
For Bernard Muchuri and his fiancé Rachael Muturi, Saturday would have been a special day.
The duo from Kawangware in Nairobi had planned for months and heavily invested in their wedding.
All was set for their relatives and friends to witness them walk down the aisle at the Full Gospel Church Kawangware this weekend.
But this will, unfortunately, not be. Instead, the couple, like many others who had scheduled to solemnise their unions in the next few weeks, can only imagine how the big day would have been.
Muchuri, a pastor, and Muturi had to call off the ceremony, whose planning started in January, following the government’s ban on large gatherings.
The ban affected weddings, church services and even funerals, as part of the measures to prevent a spread of coronavirus.
Since Monday, the couple has been reaching out to their friends and relatives in Meru, Nakuru, Kiambu and Nairobi, who they had invited to the wedding, to inform them that the nuptials will not proceed.
“We want to thank you for your love, support and every deed to see that our wedding day was successful this Saturday 28th March, but it will not take place due to the directives given by the government of Kenya that no public gatherings of more than 20 people will be allowed,” they wrote in their message.
They added: “Bearing in mind that all of you would wish that we celebrate the big day together and as per now it’s impossible, with the help of our religious leaders, we have decided to postpone the wedding day until a day that we shall let you know.”
The couple had already bought a wedding gown for the bride and a suit for the groom, clothes for bride maids and groomsmen and their parents.
They had also hired vehicles to ferry the couple and their guests on the wedding day.
The couple had also booked the St James Catholic Church HGM grounds for the reception and paid a deposit.
Yesterday, Muchuri told People Daily that though the postponement of the wedding was a difficult decision, it was better that they wait.
“We would have just come together with my bride, pastor, parents and best couple and carried on with the marital vows.
But we have many friends who have been part of our lives and had participated in the planning and we felt that it was better to wait.”
On Sunday, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said the government had decided to ban all social gatherings, including in churches and mosques, because majority of the people had ignored safety protocols on social distancing outlined last Friday.
Kagwe also ordered closure of bars, banned weddings and restricted funerals to family members not exceeding 15 as part of measures to slow down the spread of coronavirus.
Muchuri said two other weddings in the church had been called off.
But they are at least lucky that their suppliers, most of who belong to their church, had agreed to compensate for the services procured from them once the disease is subdued and another date set.
The couple’s predicament is an illustration of the impact of coronavirus on social activities, with thousands of weddings having been called off in churches and mosques across the country.
Presbyterian Church of East Africa Secretary General Rev Peter Kania yesterday told People Daily that though they have not tabulated the numbers “they so many”.
“We shall give the numbers later but all I can say for now is that they are so many,” Kania said, adding that the PCEA Naivasha Parish alone had 30 weddings called off in line with the government’s directive.
Christ is the Answer Ministries (CITAM) communications manager Rogers Wambua said they have put off 11 weddings at the Thika Road church.