The Kiembeni Holy Family Catholic Church in Mombasa held mass wedding for 14 couples over the weekend.
It was a spectacle to behold as the 14 couples walked down the aisle in the packed church service which held the celebration under the theme ‘My Family My Pride’.
The parish church in the populous Kiembeni estate was a beehive of activity as vehicles dropped couples resplendent in wedding dress one by one at the church entrance.
The couples did not spend a single cent on the collective wedding as everything was paid for by the church.
Parish Priest reverend Father Vincent Alicho said the church decided to hold the event as a way to change the perception around the marriage institution that ‘it is an expensive venture’.
“As a parish we have decided to challenge the myth that weddings are expensive undertakings” said Alicho in an interview with journalists after presiding over the ceremony.
The man of God said three couples were not able to join the church event because they had relationship issues.
Alicho a Nigerian missionary said it was the church’s desire to help couples to move from cohabitation into marriage covenant.
He commended the 14 couples for taking the bold decision to have their marriages blessed in church noting that the church is only interested in peaceful and lasting marriages as opposed to casual relationships.
For taking the bold decision to say their “Marriage is the best way to go and that cohabitation which seems to be popular with young couples cannot replace the old age institution of marriage” he said adding that the event is also expected to help more couples to exchange vows in the church.
Youthful couple Thomas Wambua and Philis Mbithi said they were happy to be part of the historic event and helped by the church.
[Some of the glowing brides during the wedding ceremony. Photo/Ahmed Omar].
Benedict Zuma and Alice Wambui who are deaf couple said they lived together as unmarried adults in the past 30 years.
Through an interpreter said they have been blessed with six children and that they were happy that the church has helped them step out of that situation and ‘solemnized our marriage’.
Jonah Alwiga the chairman of the mass wedding said the young generation is reluctant to face weddings because they believe they require a lot of money to do it or that they are just busy.