Alma and Ogonna share an eternal bond which has allowed them to grow together as a couple and as followers of God. Ogonna first started pursing Alma when he saw her act in a play. He was immediately captivated by her and knew she was the kind and compassionate woman he had been waiting for God to put in his path. Alma on the other hand, was a bit reluctant. It wasn’t until she and Ogonna worked together on the broadcasted announcements at her church that she realized they were meant to be together.
Read all about Alma and Ogonna’s exquisite and elegant wedding in Ontario as well as view the beautiful images taken by Samantha Clarke Photography.
Bride & Groom: Ogonnaya and Alma
Occupations: US Tax Analyst & Electrical Engineer
Wedding date: August 13, 2017
Wedding location: Restoration House Hamilton
Reception location: Grand Olympia, Ontario
Tell us how you met and all about the proposal. (Ogonna) The first time I saw Alma was when she was acting in a play. She stole the audience’s attention and certainly stole mine. I was asking everyone “Who was that?” Her name alone intrigued me, subtle and close to home. My kind of girl. I envisioned her as a kind, warm and loving lady from the east of Nigeria and that’s exactly who I eventually knew her to be.
From the moment Alma opened up to me, I decided to make her the number one person in my life. This decision has been worth it in every single way. For the past six years we’ve been a support system for each other. From the humble beginnings of our undergrad years to this very present era of pursuing our career goals and seeing our wedding dreams becoming a reality. Seeing her become the woman she is has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. She lights me up and makes me see the more optimistic and enthusiastic side of life. She’s the perfect partner to set life goals with. She’s an inspiration and a comforter. She’s God’s carefully designed guardian angel. I’m so glad she managed to see something special in me. Despite my imperfections, she assured me that I was the best fit for her. These six years of knowing her have allowed me to see all of her unique and outstanding qualities. By God’s grace, I look forward to every piece of the journey we have ahead in marriage. Je t’aime ma reine!
(Alma) While in high school, I joined a local church but it was not until 2008 that I decided to join the drama department because I loved acting. I had some experience here and there from plays I acted in Tunisia and thought it would be fun to be featured in the upcoming youth event. Although I barely remember the play, it seems that this was the very first time Ogonna laid eyes on me. To be honest, that is how the pursuit began! (Although that was short lived)…Quite frankly, I have no idea how Ogonna got my MSN contact and would send me a random ‘Hi!’ on the messenger chat. I used to get so annoyed and thought “Who is this guy that likes disturbing me? Ugh!”At the time, I had no interest in dating Ogonna and would deliberately wait for half an hour to pass before reciprocating with another “Hi?” My lack of interest surely must have discouraged Ogo, making him give up.
Fast forward to 2011, and Ogonna and I were in the church choir together. We would exchange friendly words but nothing meaningful. Although we were not close, I saw his tenderness and kindness with other tenor singers and thought to myself “WOW! This guy will make for a good father and husband. Oh boy! His wife will be lucky to have him!”Little did I know that God had me in mind.
Shortly after, I began hosting televised church announcements, where the church programs were to be broadcasted. I soon realized that doing the announcements by myself was MUCH harder than I thought. As such, I started scouting for a male co- host. Much to my surprise, Ogonna was the only one who said yes! Thank God Ogonna had agreed, as this was the genesis of our story. Had he refused perhaps you would not have been on this page reading our love story at this very point in time.
One day after recording the announcement, I noticed that Ogonna felt down about something and his spirit was low. He was not his bubbly self and did not attempt to crack a joke. I was trying so hard to avoid being “too friendly” with Ogo for fear that I would get too close. After thought, I realized that ‘what kind of Christian will I be if I saw that someone was down and simply ignored him?” After a moment of guilt, I told Ogo to call me if he needed a friend to talk to. He did indeed call and never stopped calling ever since then! To be honest, I didn’t even realize when our friendship became deeper and the love between us grew. Our relationship is so organic, it can only be from God- the maker of all good things!
The proposal: Every time the 13th day of the month rolls by, I can’t help but smile from my heart. I reminisce on the day Ogonna asked me to be his forever. I always say that God brought him into my life to show me His unconditional love and patience. He came into my life again unexpectedly after my second year of university, at a time God was mending my broken heart.I don’t quite believe in a “knight in a shining armor” however, I do believe in God placing people into your life for a purpose. Indeed, God makes all things beautiful in His time.
As a couple, we have grown in deep friendship and love with an unbreakable cord. Our love has come full circle as Ogonna took the bold step of making me his wife by proposing in church, where it all began. Although, he is shy and pretty low key Ogonna went out of his comfort zone to give me the BEST proposal ever. One which means the world to me. He could have decided to do something typical like take me to a restaurant and place a ring in my meal, but he chose to honor me in front of friends and God’s people. I will forever remember this moment.
On November 13th, 2016 my church had organized a concert where Don Moen, the astounding gospel and worship would be performing. His presence had attracted over 700 attendants with the event being watched live globally. It was on that very day that Ogonna decided to sing a song to me and get on bended knees! I never saw it coming to say the very least. Before the event, I was asked by my pastor to be the MC of the event but I was not in the mood to be at the forefront and decided instead to do the voice-over introducing the various artist at the back of the church with the technical team. Little did I know what was coming. Like any other performing artist, I had read Ogonna’s introducing biography and awaited his performance. After one song, I noticed something strange. I thought, “Wait, was Ogonna really singing a love song in church? Wait- could this song be about me? No way, he would never do that- not in church!” Boy was I wrong!! Little did I know that he had spent months tirelessly writing and producing this song for me, while making sure I didn’t read his texts with the band whom he coordinated with.
I am blessed beyond any doubt to be marrying Ogonna. To be his chosen one. God makes no mistakes, he brought him in my life at a time when I had doubted love, just to show me that He is indeed a God of second chances.
Bridesmaids/Groomsmen gifts: The bridesmaids received bride mugs stating ‘Bride Squad and Bride Tribe’
Favorite item on the menu: Meat Kebab and Jollof Rice
First dance song: “Why I Love You” by Major
What is your best memory from your wedding? My best memory of the wedding was seeing Ogonna dance! He typically always said that he wouldn’t dance but will encourage me as I do because he felt shy that he did not have the moves. To my greatest surprise I saw him pulling some moves that I had never seen.
In addition to that, I also enjoyed seeing both of our parents play the shoe game in front of our guests. We felt it would be more significant as they have been married for 40 and 30 years. It was so fun to see our parents’ answers and the joy in their faces as they were integrated into our reception.
What is the best wedding advice you can give to engaged couples? My advice to any engaged couple, is to plan way ahead of time and make early payments so that as time approaches you can really enjoy your upcoming wedding without the unnecessary stress. Also learn to be emotionally intelligent and do not allow anything to get you upset. You should understand during the planning process, people may step on your toes. Just make sure that forgiveness is at the forefront of everything you do and ” keep it moving”.
Regarding the actual day, if you have the financial capacity I would advise getting a great planner or day of/ month of coordinator to help facilitate tasks, ensuring that you can actual enjoy your day given that it goes very fast and you will want to have the best memories possible.
Photographer: Samantha Clarke
Wedding Dress Designer: Essence of Australia
Wedding Dress Salon: Tom Jeon Bridal
Bridesmaids’ Dresses: House of Dorothy
Hair: Arthur Hair
Hair Accesories: My Velvet Box, Nigeria
Makeup: Afia Beauty
Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Ceremony Location: Restoration House Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Reception Location– The Grand Olympia, Ontario, Canada
Videography: Poetic Stone Studios
Wedding Planner: Nola Events
Florist: Fortinos House of Flowers
Cake: AfroCoco Cakes
Event Designer: Luxe Soiree Events
Candy Bar: Candys by Sisters
Photobooth: Selfie Photo Stand
Stationary Graphic Designs: Emaege Studios
Media: Pleasures Magazine