Marriage brings families together, blends cultures, creates new traditions and often takes couples on journeys to unexpected places. Olumide and Rochelle Kolawole met while attending medical school eight years ago in Ghana. Their paths merged and brought them across the Atlantic to Jackson, Mississippi, where Olumide is completing his residency. Their incredible engagement and wedding photos tell a story of love that crosses cultural and international boundaries.
How They Met
Rochelle recalls, “I was moving into the building across from his with some of my girlfriends, and he caught a glimpse of me from his window. We quickly became the best of friends and after two years, it became obvious to us we were in love and wanted to be together.”
How He Proposed
“He didn’t actually propose to me…he proposed to my dad!
“Being from West Africa, the concept of ‘getting engaged’ is a bit different than in the U.S. We knew we were going to get married from the time we started dating. Culturally speaking however, the biggest deal where we come from is getting each set of parents’ approval so, after Olu got my dad’s permission, our families organised our customary engagement ceremony.
“Now this is where it gets interesting. We are from two different countries which means his entire family had to fly from Nigeria (his country) to Liberia (my country) for the engagement ceremony, which was a beautiful and colorful blend of our two cultures.
“It was a pretty elaborate affair complete with a formal marriage proposal from his family to mine, outfit changes (see photos below), traditional African drumming, dances, exchanges of gifts, fine cloths, spirits and a dowry payment that included a live cow…yes a live cow!”
The Wedding Ceremony
On February 17, Olumide and Rochelle were married in Saint Richard Catholic Church in Jackson, MS. “From the church ceremony to the reception….everything was just beautiful and fun!” Rochelle said. “The best part for us was how intimate our wedding felt throughout. We had one hundred of our closest family and friends who traveled from overseas and all over the country. We were surrounded by an overwhelming amount of love and that really made every moment feel special.”
Cheers and many happy years to Olumide and Rochelle Kolawole! – IDY
Photographer | Martha Grace Gray Photography
Ceremony Venue | Saint Richard Catholic Church
Florals, Rentals & Catering | Top It Off Events
Reception Venue | The Lake House
Cake | For Heaven’s Cakes
Music & Entertainment | DJ Baggins, Maryland
Bridal Gown Designer | custom made by LaceMarry Atelier
Bride’s Makeup | Joshua White from Jai Lee Faces Makeup Artistry
Tuxedo | custom made by Patrick Shell
Guest Transportation | LeFleur Transportation
Invitations | Poy Talata, Ghana (West Africa)
Guest Accommodations | The Hilton Jackson/Courtyard Marriot
Videographer | Harold Lyle’s Videography
Engagement Ceremony Photographer | Momento (Ghana)