Jude and Connie on their wedding day, August 17, 2019. PHOTO/COURTESY

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After training to be a priest for 20 years, I've found joy in marriage

What you need to know:

  • All Jude had ever wanted was to be a priest. He trained for 20 years to achieve this dream but due to unforeseen circumstances, this dream ended abruptly.
  • After struggling to find a balance, he met Connie, the love of his life.

Jude Thaddeus Jasu, a lecturer of psychology in Asmara College of education in Asmara Eritrea and Connie Mary Kiteko, a manager at a law firm in Wandegeya, Kampala, were joined in holy matrimony on August 17, 2019 at St Francis Chapel Makerere University and later held a reception at Las Vegas Gardens in Gaba, Kampala.

A week before their wedding, Connie had introduced Jude at her parents’ home in Paya Village, Tororo District.

As a child Jude had a desire to become a priest. However, after training for more than 20 years, for various reasons his dream was shattered and he had to leave the seminary. Faced with a bleak future, luck came knocking and Jude was sponsored by the Mill Hill Missionaries, where he had pursuing his priesthood, to go and study a bachelor’s of education in Nairobi, Kenya.

Jude, who had spent most of his life abroad and mostly with priests says adjusting to life in the ‘world’ was not easy.
“I had to go through a lot counselling from both my family and members of Mill Hill Missionaries. I was told God’s ways are not our ways and He is the one who has purpose for everything. Without becoming a priest, I was still set to pursue other things in life and still become successful,” says Jude.

He adds that he took three years and during this time, he learnt different ways of coping outside the seminary.

“Even when I decided to get married, I had no idea how to find a good wife. On this I consulted a friend who said that when I met the right person, it would come naturally.  Problem is, I did not know how to even ask a woman out,” Jude says.

Back home
In 2015, he travelled back to Uganda for a holiday. During this time, he was invited for a visit by his friend, who is also Connie’s brother.

“He told me about his sister and gave me a go ahead to date her. Although I barely knew what to do or say, he refused to approach her on my behalf. When I finally met her, she was so beautiful that I lost my words. However, I later gathered the courage and approached her,’’ says Jude.

Connie says she met Jude at her brother’s home where she was staying and they became good friends. Being a family friend they had already exchanged contacts and would communicate freely as friends and she had no idea that Jude had picked interest in her.

“Through our usual chats, we started asking about each other’s likes and dislikes and through these, we became closer. By the time he told me his intentions, I had already fallen in love with his personality although I still played hard to get,” says Connie

She adds that she was attracted to Jude because he was handsome, an ex-seminarian and someone with a good religious background. Her dream had always been to fall in love with a God-fearing, financially stable and handsome man and Jude ticked all the boxes.

Although Jude had travelled back to Nairobi, he persisted that he wanted to marry Connie and even increased his communication through phone calls and whatsApp messages. She later said yes since by now, most of her family members also knew Jude. So, after six months of dating, the two started planning their traditional and church weddings. 

Jude and Connie were joined in Holy Matrimony on August 17, 2019 after the two met in 2015. PHOTO/COURTESY 

Connie says marrying Jude was a blessing. He is her prayer warrior and counsellor and together, they face their challenges through prayer. 

Challenges

“Handling two functions at the same time plus working full time was not an easy task, especially since the two functions were within two weeks and in different districts. However, with support from family and friends, everything went on without a glitch,” says Connie.

Jude, who lives and works in Eritrea, says as newly weds, it was not easy to adjust to the long distance since he had only been given three months off work.

“Many would come and ask where my husband was. I had to explain that he worked out of the country and could only afford to visit once in a while. Although I was strong, many hurting words got the better of me, especially when people started saying that Jude had married and dumped me within such a short time,” says Connie.

But after they realised that she was happy and her husband would fly back to Uganda every three months, they relented.

“For me, living apart was actually a good thing. Whenever my husband came back, it was like a honeymoon all over again. We had no time to argue over small matters since we wanted to use every minute to better our partnership,” she says. 

As a means to keep the bond, Jude says they communicate through Skype every three days and through whatsApp video call every day.

Future plans
Jude says although he would have loved to relocate to Uganda, he may not earn a good salary the reason he is applying for his wife to join him in Eritrea. Only Covid-19 and the constant restrictions have put a pause in these plans.

Jude and Connie. PHOTO/COURTESY

 “I do not regret getting married because I know I will be a blessing to my family, a loving husband to Connie and loving father to our children,” says Jude.

The couple are blessed with a beautiful baby girl named after Jude’s mother Mary Frances.

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