Wedding photos – Love Story and Photos | Kemi + John in Durham, NC

It was fun and exciting shooting Kemi and Johns wedding alongside Tolu Alabi  of Kaakaki Studios. We previously featured their wedding decor which can be found here

Read their love story and enjoy the photos.

Love Story According to the Bride

Ours is not the typical love story, it is special, tailored and designed just for us. I have not known love from a man like this. This man could only be made by God for me.


Our first meeting:

My Joni and I are passionate musicians. It is so surreal that we met in church doing what we both love. He plays the guitar, which is my favorite instrument and I sing with my voice. So, there was somewhat a clique we didn’t pay attention to when we both met last year.

I had to minister at his church and I remember the choir director had mentioned he played the bass, so he played alongside other musicians in my band. It was my first time officially ministering after the release of my album, I was and still very particular about sowing seeds and appreciating musicians because we work really hard. I made sure I gave everyone a CD signed by me, including the man who would become the love of my life. He was very courteous and I enjoyed talking to him briefly.



Late last year, the church I had ministered at as a guest minister became my home church and so this time he was a brother in church. After several torture within, I advanced to join the work force to make myself useful in God’s house. He of course was nice to me. “John is very kind hearted,” so I didn’t read too much into his being nice. He sent messages to share his excitement about having me in the choir. Not too long after that, he invited me to lunch, which I couldn’t make it to. Then he had invited me to see a movie with other young adults. We ended up sitting next to each other which again was weird but something struck me for the first time but I neglected it once again because I thought he was engaged or something. Do not get me wrong, my Joni is a fine man with the best scent of cologne you can find. Super turn on! For the first time, I felt I needed a real companion. LOL. He also of all the people chose to drop me off at home after rehearsal. Joni did it with pride and in fact was disappointed when I got picked up by someone else. I still didn’t pay attention to all these gestures until one fateful Sunday he had invited me to his house to work on music together. After singing and him playing, I left to go home and everything changed. I fell in love with him that night, I could never explain this love. I was so swooned and twisted I had to pray to God to reveal if he was the ONE. You all know the story after…


Our Proposal:

After a very firm conviction established between us, we started dating and we knew. Believe me we were already making wedding plans before the ring came.

Back to the proposal: we had a concert on the 27th of June. I was a guest singer and he was playing with the band. I was pacing back and forth trying to figure out my vocal balance and for some reason we ran into each other, we held hands and walked through an isolated path in the kitchen that leads to the sanctuary. I planted a kiss on his cheek after he asked are you ready? He was somewhat shaky, he put his hand in his pocket and said your ring came. It still didn’t register. He then showed me and said; “put your ring on babe.” And I said wouldn’t you be nice to put it on my finger.. He then shakily put it and I leaped and hugged him so tightly. I honestly didn’t know what to say. He put another kind of confidence in me that moment. We went out and gave them a little piece of the music in our soul. I said YES to the love of my life.


Our Future:

On the 19th of December I said “I do” to John Fonachua Gwan; our forever begins and I know bliss awaits. It has been bliss all through this year because you are the best companion God made for me. I couldn’t have it any other way because with you, the power of my humanity evolves. You and I are even more powerful together and like you always say, there is nothing in this world we cannot conquer together. I can’t wait to be joined to you spirit, soul and body where forever is fresh like the very first time. Thank you for waiting 33 years just to choose me to be your wife. It is the best honor in the world.


Love Story from Groom:

“He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord”. Or like my brothers from the hood would say “I’m sprung”.

To cut a long story, it’s the centuries-old mystery of mysteries.

A riddle one can only solve by experiencing it.

A question one can only answer by finding and living through the answer.

Honestly, I had done a lot of research work on this subject.  I’ve read a lot of books, studied a lot of messages… Interviewed successfully married couples… etc. And yet NOTHING really prepares you for the shock of the “feeling” and “knowledge” that this is the person you’re supposed to walk with for the rest of your life!

I didn’t know immediately that Kemi was the one. Our first encounter… well, left me quite amused.

She was the guest artist. I was the guitarist. I said “Hi”, she said “Hello”… and the rest is History. After the program, I stopped to shake her hand on my way out… and she stooped her knees in respect, and said something. I think she said “Thank you sir”. I was really too busy laughing on the side.

I call myself “Uncle John” but that’s just in jest. I never actually expect anyone to bow to me or stoop, especially when the gesture is genuine. I took note, but of course dismissed it quickly from my mind.

For all I cared, she was a guest artist who I may never meet again; guest artists… you know how it is.. they come and they go.

I remember the day it dawned on me that she was the one.

I expected to find “the one” soon, but I didn’t expect to occur so soon. It’s like God interrupts your life and whispers in your ear.  “You know what I promised you?  What you’ve been looking for the past few months?  There she is”

And once I knew, that was all I needed to know. Fast forward to courtship… skip the “casual dating”…

and here we are. I have no doubt that we are meant for each other.

I have no doubt that we’re matched for destiny. I have no doubt that there’s divine purpose in our union- and ministry.


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