By Elias Hakizimana
So many wedding ceremonies took place in Rwandan tradition marking various characteristics but all falling into the same culture.
The culture of giving wedding gifts has been a sign of mutual gratitude among Rwandans to give to the couple while at their wedding party.
The common gifts during Rwandan tradition while at a wedding ceremony include Money, cloths, and various materials wrapped into gifts boxes, but it was quite less to see people donating cattle/domestic animals such as sheep as it happened during Emmanuel Ntirenganya and Josephine Izabayo’s wedding.
On one hand as Rwandans used to say for example donating a young baby as a sign to the newly formed couple – who are going to make their new home – is to wish them prosperity through giving birth to children.
However, some other areas of Rwanda basing on their culture can donate gifts such as cows, goats, pigs, ships and others.
Ntirenganya and Izabayo when receiving a living lovely sheep were smiling, showing that it marks a significant input for their culture, and many of their relatives and neighbours would all wish to donate cattle beyond other gifts they brought to the couple.
The Inspirer wished to know further about such a culture through a conversation with the couple, whose native place is the same, in Bugarama sector, Burera District in Northern Province.
Getting in their new home at Kacyiru sector in Gasabo district on December 10, 2017, I found the blessed couple driven by lovely relationship very careful to the guests.
Being welcome into their house, I was curious to know something behind what I saw during the ceremony of gift donating the day of their wedding.
For Ntirenganya, the culture of donating cattle is a sign of a wealth wishing, that strengthens the love of relatives and friend towards the new formed-family.
“We are happy to see people coming to support new engaged couples in wedding. Donating such gifts shows unity, love and mutual enthusiasm amongst the people. This should be adopted by other areas of the country and the young generation can learn very significant culture, cattle contribute to agriculture production through manure fertilizers and can raise financial income to the family, therefore, we do appreciate this culture and we will preserve it,” Ntirenganya told The Inspirer.
He added that beyond raising the family’s welfare, sheep, itself is a cattle that represents peace and good relationship. He noted that this culture highlights the sociability and gratitude to recognize that the new formed family has shifted from the single situation to a growing family which deserves welfare, properties and prosperity.
Izabayo complements Ntirenganya saying that gifts including cattle are very important as they play a role of start-ups for a new formed family to build their own development.
“Sheep are reproductive within a short period and are grown in our area, our relatives and friends donate them to help new families to fast increase properties and welfare, we can also donate for other people or sell them to earn money for any other financial use when they are multiplied, this contributes to the social-economic development,” said Izabayo.
The couple was engaged in a long-lasting togetherness life on November 30, 2017.
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