[Uganda Weddings] Meeting someone in a simple, yet beautiful way, followed by an equally simple wedding isn’t a combination you find any day.
But this is what happened to Efi Koelewijn and Joseph Matsiga. After two years of praying at University Christian Fellowship (UCF), Efi, a community psychologist and baker decided to join the worship team and had to talk to the choir director, Joseph, to do that.
That was the first time she talked to her now husband, the communications person at UCF although she had been seeing him on stage before.
We became friends and then everything went pretty fast. Two months after, we were in a relationship,” Efi reveals.
“When we got together, we had total conviction and we knew the direction to take. The goal wasn’t to hang round, we were focused on doing everything right, being together and getting married,” Matsiga emphatically states.
A year and eleven months after they met, on September 22, the two tied the knot at Makerere Full Gospel Church, Makerere.
We live in a time when having mega weddings is the new normal. However the Matsigas decided to keep their wedding simple, uncomplicated but cosy. That said, having a simple wedding doesn’t have to mean having substandard things. What it calls for however is setting priorities and sticking to them. This is the story of how the Matsigas went about their wedding.
“What I wanted for our wedding was that it would be simple yet warm. A few close people – family, friends, who have been there through our walk in life,” Efi explains. On the other hand, Joseph dreamed of a mega wedding.
“In my head, I wanted this humongous, mega wedding but meeting her and talking over it made me start asking myself questions of why I wanted this. So we eventually got on the same page and decided to keep it simple. However even in the process of keeping things simple, there were certain things I really wanted to see happening and yet she didn’t see it that way,” he says.
“Compromising and crossing over to what she had in mind was a bit of a problem we had through the preparations. One of the biggest issues we had was with the wedding venue,” Matsiga admits. Whereas he wanted an outdoor wedding reception, Efi wanted an indoor wedding in a hall.
To find a common ground, they settled for having their reception at Fairway Hotel in Kampala. “But even at the hotel, we went for the least expensive offers on the list,” Matsiga points out.
However, two weeks to the wedding, the hotel management changed the deal they had with them and needed the couple to throw in an extra Shs10,000 per plate. “I wanted to change the venue but we weren’t successful. She suggested we have the reception at UCF, but I had my own reservations. So we stayed at Fairway Hotel, but reduced our guest list by half – from 300 people to only 150,” he adds
ong things that helped the couple keep costs down was being strategic on hiring friends and people they knew. “For the videography for example, I have a friend who does videography and photography so he agreed to work for us with the little money we had and as for decoration, we got a service provider who does it for our church. We were very strategic and very open that we really don’t have a lot. So, we were working at a friendly level,” Matsiga shares.
Prioritising and cost-cutting
“Our final guest list had 150 people. We gave the hotel Shs50,000 per person and those who came to the reception and weren’t on our guest list, took soda and cake. We didn’t spend any extra cash on food,” Matsiga confides.
When it came to the cars, Efi says they had an entourage of 14 people and so they needed about four cars. “I wanted us to get cars from friends, but Joseph wanted Benzes and to strike a balance, we decided to just hire two Benzes at Shs150,000 each and borrowed other cars from different friends we knew,” Efi says.
From EventoUG team, we wish them a very happy marriage.