GUYS, way to go (going back to your roots and marrying the same way your fathers and forefather did). Excellent way to keep our culture and tradition, amind western style marriage sweeping our society in recent days, even national couples showing up in expensive gowns, booking and wedding in priced hotels making it hard for grassroots to witness (good to make the bride happy but bad for our cultural heritage). Ignoring our pride and livelihood of traditional marriage rituals?
This report covers a balance of a cross-cultural marriage honouring both cultures! Cross-cultural marriage yet honouring your culture and tradition by "maritim waitmeri long tumbuna pasin bilong yumi" Congrats!
By ZACHERY PER
TWO young Australians women made a brave decision to marry two young Bena men in Eastern Highlands province and got their marriage traditionally formalised and accepted over the weekend.
Kate and Miranda from Perth in Western Australia got their marriage to Alex Akepa Ihanimo and Nathaniel Ihanimo overwhelmingly accepted by the people of Bena at Arufa village on Saturday, when the Bena style traditional marriage ceremony was conducted.
Alex 28 and Nathaniel 26 had been living with their parents (Paul and Judy Ihanimo) in Australian for almost 20 years and had already formalised their marriage in Western weeding ceremonies in Australia.The family went to live in Australia in 1987, as their father (Paul Ihanimo) was taken there as a Four Square Missionary. They lived there ever since and the boys went to school and completed their university education and are working there.The other young Ihanimos are Emmanuel 22 and Popsy 24, the only girl in the family.
Alex and his bride Kate had their weeding at Port Douglas in Cairns Australia in July 14, 2005 and Nathaniel and his bride Miranda had theirs in Perth on April 9, 2005.
Their father Paul Ihanimo told The National in Arufa village on Saturday that his sons insisted to get their marriage traditionally and culturally recognised in Bena style where they hailed from.
"It was their firm believe and advocacy for traditional cultural values, that brought their wives up here to be traditionally recognised," Mr Ihanimo said.
Alex, the first born, was named after former MP and knight from the area Sir Akapa Miakwe, as his mother Judy gave birth to him on the eve of the declaration of Sir Akapa as Member of Ungai Bena in 1977 (July 16, 1977).
Sir Akepa, a biological relative of the Ihanimos, was present to witness the traditional marriage ceremony and bought the weeding cake for his name sake.
He praised the decision of the young couples to have their marriage formalised and recognised, saying that many nowadays forget the importance of traditional cultural values.
"Their value and respect for our unique culture is overwhelmingly accepted by the relatives in Bena," Sir Akepa said.
Both Alex and Nathaniel thanked relatives, guests and friends who took part in preparing food and witnessing their marriage.
They challenged the young children of today to study hard in school and at the same time value their traditional culture.
Some of the notable guests witnessing the ceremony were Four Square Church pastors Reverend Kumoro Vira, Rev Timothy Tipitap (President of PNG Four Square Church), Rev Kauga Baglme (General Supervisor of Four Square Church in PNG) and sister of Kate (Alex wife) Toni Jackson who travelled with the couples to Bena to witness the ceremony.
More than 3, 000 people from more than six villages in Bena and Goroka town attended the weeding. Several pigs, chicken, a cow and garden foods were prepared to commemorate the marriage in traditional style.