Marriage is the union of a man and a woman to form a family. It is also an agreement or a state in which a man and a woman decide to leave their parents' home's purposely to live together as one body.

In some cases these who marry can be closely related like it is common among Arabs, Jews and Indians where cousins and step sisters and brothers can marry each other but it is rare in most African societies.

Marriages within / between closely related persons is called endogamy while that with less or no relationship is exogamy. Under exogamy parents and couples to be try to find out whether they are related or not in order to allow the marriage to take place.

Importance of Marriage

Procreation: In marriage society increases in number and this enables society to grow and avoid extinction and this mirrors God's creative activity as co-creators (Gen 1 :26- 28).

Mutual compliment: The full image of God is a combination of both male and female so that as they stay together, work in unity, completeness is achieved.

Model of Christ's relationship: Marriage acts as a model relationship of Christ with which we find love finding its meaning full expression for God's glory. Just as Christ loved church to the extent of sacrificing his life for it so should married partners. (1 Pet 3: 1- 7)

Remedy against sin: Marriage acts as a remedy against sin so that those who cannot stay alone or cannot control themselves should marry and express and express faithfulness to one another i.e. sexual faithfulness (1 Cor 7:8-9).


Fellowship: In marriage the two become one flesh in a life giving relationship and are able to plan together, work and carry one another's burden.

Family stability: If the family is to fulfil its functions, stability is very important which is only possible in marriage relationship through love between husband and wife.

Functions of Marriage

Marriage is useful in creating relationship or diplomatic associations in case of conflicting societies or tribes e.g. for along time Jap Adholas and Banyole were enemies (Banja Machoni - old debt) but through marriage they became friends because of a new way of paying the debt (Banja Machoni).

Marriage acts as source of labour in case of polygamy plant of work is done easily.

Marriage acts as source of wealth / income in terms of bride wealth for then daughters' poor families raise standards.

It is another way of fulfilling God's command of Gen 2:18 which express that "it is not good for man to be alone."

Marriage is important for procreation and upbringing of children in order to fill the earth.

Marriage serves accommodation to excess women.

It helps to eliminate sex deviation and acts as a remedy against sin since it offers sexual satisfaction.

Marriage adds to ones prestige and status i.e. however ugly a man or woman is as long as he/ she is married one has more respect in society than aim unmarried beautiful or handsome person.

It is in marriage that one can express responsibility or maturity.

In marriage children are born who in future become security of their parents economically and defence against aggression.

It also gives sense of belonging and gives ownership or authority by the man.

lt is useful for continuation of lineage of ancestors so that the family name is preserved.

It is one way of serving others in society since people look at them for assistance.

It extends relationship i.e. the more wives one has the more one has relationship with other tribes or races / groupings as it extends beyond such barriers.

Through marriage there is more exchange of ideas from different backgrounds where people share and discuss issues of interest.

Courtship and Marriage

Courtship refers to a close or the intimate relationship between a man and woman who are mutually attracted to each other with the intension of getting married.

It may also be used to mean friendship developed between a man and woman attracted to each other. In other words, courtship attracted to each other. To the period of interaction between a man and woman who are

Today, many people refer to courtship as dating. This is characterized by constant visits, sharing of ideas and exchange of gift among others. Note should be       that in courtship sex is not of it especially in Christian and traditional setting.

On the wife hand, marriage is a union of an adult male and female living together as husband.

It can also mean an agreement between a man and woman to live or stay together as husband wife.

In other words marriage is a long life relationship established between a man and a woman as 1:1 husband and a wife.

Merits or Importance of Courtship

1.         It gives time necessary for the partners to know each other properly before deciding to marry

2.         The man and woman are able to discover each other's dislikes and likes. This enables the partners to appreciate their differences and accept one another way they are.

3.         It enables the partners to know the strength and weakness of one another. This makes it possible for one partner to accommodate the other weaknesses.

4.         It gives time necessary for the man and the woman to prepare for marriage in the future. They can use such a time to put together the requirement necessary for their marriage including the bride price.

5.         It enables the partners to make proper choices. This is because marriage is arrived after a long interaction.

6.         It tests the love that each partner has got for another. This lays a strong foundation for a future stable marriage.

7.     It helps the partners to adjust their behaviour or character in order to accommodate incoming behaviour or character.

8.         It gives an opportunity for the partners to grow into a mutual understanding and respect to one another.

9.         It enables the partners to know each other's character. This helps the partner to decide whether or not they can be together with the identified character in future.

10.    Courtship helps to reveal the family back ground of each partner. This is in respect to their character and financial status among others.

11.    It helps to guard against life crisis which may arise as a result of knowledge of the partner. This could be problems related to fertility. It is, therefore   to reconcile with each other in the future.

12.    It allows each partner to introduce each other to the relatives. This enables the partners appreciate their family differences.

13.    It enables the man and the woman to come together in order to establish firm a relationship in preparation future life together.

Disadvantages of Courtship

It can easily lead to fornication especially if it is prolonged Fornication has its own problems like unwanted pregnancy and acquisition of sexually transmitted diseases like AIDS.

It is possible that people with ill intensions can ruin the partners through rumours. This can easily to bring their relationship to an abrupt end thus leaving the partners heartbroken.

It can make some youth to become rebellious towards their parents and their relatives. This is especially if such relatives disapprove the relationship.

It may not necessary lead the man and the woman into marriage. This is especially after one has realized the weaknesses of the other.

Some partners may be attracted to each other because of material benefits. Therefore, in the absence of such benefits like money, the relationship is most likely to come to an end.

It is also possible that the partners may disagree in small issues as a result of being close to one another every now and then. This can lead to frustration.

It may lead to breaking of cultural values. Young people tend to choose their own partners independently.

It is also difficult for the young partners to find the ideal and suitable partner. Because of this, they may be forced to keep moving in search of a better relationship.

The love between a man and woman can easily be destroyed. If the courtship becomes too long, an impatient partner may lose interest in the relationship.

It may be difficult for each partner to identify whether or not the other one is true and committed to the relationship or is simply pretending.

Marriage breaks social barrier in the society like race and class differences. Especially, if the marriage is arrived at because of love.

Marriage shows that the man and the woman are responsible. The partner to come together as husband and wife means they are ready to fulfill their obligations.

It promotes the sense of belonging and identify between the man and the woman community can identify each partner as the wife and the husband of the other.

Marriage helps to promote the cultures a given society like the culture of keeping domestic animals like cattle. Such animals are the cultural requirements that have to be met as part of the bride wealth.

Marriage is a source of blessings to the man and woman. During the occasion, blessings are received from the community members and the religious leaders.

Marriage helps to control social evils including rape and defilement. This is especially true if the partners are faithful to each other and are able to satisfy their sexual urge.

Marriage shows that the man and the woman are mature enough to make independent decisions and live an adult life.

Importance of Marriage

1. Marriage fulfills God's plan for human kind. God commanded the first human beings to multiply and fill the world and this is only made possible through marriage.

2.        It creates unity not only between the two families but in the whole society. This is brought about by the fact that the community members become related to each other.

3.         It provides wealth to some families especially that of the girl is through payment of bride price which may include cattle, goats, furniture, money etc.

4.        It ensures that there is sexual satisfaction between the man and the woman. This helps to cement the love between the two.

5.        Marriage, the man and the woman are able to give comfort and support especially in times of stressful situation

6.        Marriage helps to give status to both the man and the woman in the society. The two can be recognized and respected as legally married people.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Marriage Partner

One should consider beauty involving the skin colour, height and body size among others. This ensures that one is happy and satisfied with his or her choice.

The age of a person should be considered when choosing a marriage partner. It is better if on is relatively younger than the other

Love should be considered. This forms the foundation of a strong and a stable marriage for the partners in the future

The health status of a person should be highly considered. One should choose someone with a better health status

The cultural background of the two partners should be considered. There should be some similarities in their ways of life.       This is important in creating harmony and understanding in the marriage.

One should also consider the family background. This can help the partners to assess whether they can easily fit in that particular family.

The financial status of a person should be considered. A partner should at least be in position to support the other by providing the bask needs like food and clothes.

One should consider the character of a person. Virtues like politeness, humility and honesty should form part of the partners' personality.

The profession of a person should be considered. The jobs should give enough time to the partners to enjoy the presence of each other

The hobbies, likes and interests of a person should be considered. Such should be closely related and similar in order to help bring the two together.

The level of education of the partners should be relatively the same. This helps to promote a better understanding and communication between the partners.

Types of marriage

There are three types of marriage namely:

·      Customary or traditional marriage

·      Religious marriage

·      Civil or state marriage

Customary Marriage

This is a type of marriage which takes place within the established customs of a given community. In other words, it is a marriage arrangement where the customs or the cultures of a given community or a particular group of people are followed. This is a type of marriage common in an African setting.

Characteristics of customary marriage

The marriage is carried out following the customs of the cultures of a particular group of people.

The man intending to marry follows the cultures or the customs of the woman. This is because it is the family of the girl giving her away to the family of the man in an official visit.

The marriage ceremony takes place at the ancestral home of the woman. The parents and the relatives of the man pay an official visit the family of the girl pre-arranged. It is on his day that the woman is handled over officially.

It involves the payment of bride wealth and in some cases, exchange of gifts. This is where the family of the man moves along with some items including animals like cows, goats, and beers and give them to the family of the girl.

In this marriage the man holds a superior status and, therefore, the head of the family.

The parents and the rest of the family members can choose the marriage partner or approve the choice made by their children.

The community members are involved in the marriage arrangement. They are involved through giving sex education to the children, contributing towards the payment of wealth or even making choices among others

Virginity of the is valued and respected in this type of marriage. A girl found to virgin earns respect for her family and an additional gift could be given in an appreciation for her moral uprightness.

Marriage is between people of different clans. This is because people of the same clan are considered brothers and sisters.

In this marriage, polygamy is recognized, accepted and respected. A man is allowed to marry more than one wife depending on his ability to take care of them.

There are rituals performed during the marriage ceremony. Such rituals include praying, dancing and eating food among others.

The marriage is associated with taboos particular to community. Among others, having sex during funeral rites is forbidden

Widows are inherited in this marriage arrangement. This is based on the ground that a woman married to the family belongs to everyone. Therefore, upon the death of her husband, either the brother of uncle of the deceased is allowed to take the responsibility as the husband.

The marriage is built on a permanent basis. Therefore, marriage is a life time

Advantages customary Marriage

The marriage is relatively cheaper. Being a community affair, everybody contributes especially in the payment of bride wealth. This eases the tension associated with payment of bride wealth

It caters and provides solutions for unforeseen problems in marriages like infertility of the woman. This is because it allows polygamy.

It encourages and promotes sexual morality in marriage since virginity is highly valued and respected.

There is enough sex education given to the partners before and even after being joined together. This enables the partners to know their roles as husband and wife.

5. The marriage      promotes the cultures of a particular group of people like keeping of animals.

The marriage is long lasting since it is built on permanent basis. This enables the partners to enjoy their marriage relationship.

The marriages promotes unity not only between the two families but in the family community since everyone is expected to be part of it

The marriage is more stable especially after the payment of bride wealth. This is also brought about by the continuous guidance given to the couple.

There is enough freedom given in this marriage since restrictions like religious differences are not considered.

This marriage is flexible. It gives room for polygamy and divorce in extreme cases like over beating of one of the partners.

This marriage considers that proper choice of a partner is made. The parents also are allowed either to choose or to approve the choices made by their children.

Disadvantages of Customary Marriage

It tends to promote inequality in a marriage since the man is considered to be superior and the woman inferior and submissive.

It may be expensive especially when they over demand the bride wealth like money and domestic animals including cattle and goats. This may make the grooms family poorer.

The interest of the community appears to be more important than interest of the couples. This means that the couples may not enjoy their marriage relationship,

It is also possible that one can marry a wrong choice. This is because the parents are allowed either to choose or to approve the partners for their children.

A lot of time is spent before the marriage arrangement. Many steps are involved like identifying the partners, informing the parents, waiting for the parent's approval and the sex education.

The marriage can easily break. This is because it gives room for divorce in cases infertility and marital unfaithfulness.

There is no evidence or legal document like certificates to show that the man and woman are husband and wife.

It is possible that the marriage can be unstable especially where the marriage is polygamy. Conflict arising from the disagreement between co-wives can easily disrupt the normal family life.

It limits the freedom of the wife. This can be after the death of the husband where she is supposed to be inherited by another man within the same family.

The marriage can be affected by evil traditional practices and beliefs like witchcrafts.

Religious Marriage

This is a marriage arrangement where the religion or     of the couple is followed. It is a marriage conducted following belief or practices of the couple.

Characteristics of religious marriage

1.        The marriage ceremony takes place a church premise or building.

2.        The marriage is presided over by the religious leaders like the pastors bishops reverends.

3.        There is exchange of matrimonial vows between the partners. They do promise to together as husband and wife permanently in all circumstances.

4.        Monogamy is the ideal type of marriage recognized and accepted. The man must only a woman.

5.        Certificates are given after the marriage. This is to prove that the man and woman are legal husband and wife. These certificates are signed by the couple, best man, matron the religious leader.

6.        The couples are supposed to be of the same religion and in some cases the same rensnous denomination.

7.        The marriage ceremony is done before a group of believers or congregation they are therefore witnesses to the marriage.

8.        There is exchange of wedding rings during the marriage ceremony. These rings act as physical that the couples are legally married.

9.        The marriage is built on a permanent basis. It is only death that can separate them.  The marriage intention is announced in church for a given period of time say two or three months.

10.   The couples are treated as equal the since both are created in

11.   The traditional or customary      is supposed to have been conducted before to the church.



1.         The marriage is relatively stable.    is because it is based on Christian values like humility faithfulness among others

2.        The encourages and promotes equality between the husband and wife and thus can enable the couples to enjoy their marriage life.

3.        It enables a couple to give enough time for each other since it is one man and one woman in the marriage relationship.

4.        The marriage is built on a permanent basis and therefore it lasts forever until

5.        There is enough guidance and counseling before and after the marriage. The couples are required to attend counseling sessions in the church under the guidance of religious leader.

6.        The marriage is more public. The congregation witnesses the marriage ceremony.

7.        This marriage is made more legal since certificates are given after to show that the two are husband and wife.  The couples receive blessings from God through the religious leaders. This means that the couples have a place in the heavenly kingdom.

8.        It fulfills God's command of pro-creation. Through it, the couple can produce children in following God's command of multiplying and filling the world.

9.        It checks against marital unfaithfulness like adultery and prostitution among others can make the marriage more enjoyable.

10.   The couples are given enough respect by the community members as legal husband and wife.



1. The marriage is very expensive. A lot of money is spent during the preparation for the marriage ceremony. Requirements which should be bought include the clothes, cakes and rings among others.

2. The marriage restricts one's choice of a partner. This is because the couples are expected to be of the same religion or religious denomination

3. Some couples are very shy and therefore it becomes very difficult for them to stand and make promises before the congregation.

4. It can make one become a slave in a marriage. This is especially in the event of difficult moments like fighting, poverty and constant illness of one partner. This makes the life of a partner very difficult since the marriage is meant to be permanent

5. The marriage takes a lot of time especially in its preparation. The couples are required to first get letters of approval from their parents and to keep on going for marital guidance and counselling before the actual date for the marriage.

6. Some people who marry in church tend to under mind other forms of marriages.

7. Some unforeseen problems like infertility in marriage are likely to destabilize the couples in the future

8. Some people with ill-intentions can easily destroy the marriage. This is because the marriage intention is open to the public to give their views during the announcement in the church.

 Civil or state marriage

This is a marriage arrangement conducted following constitution of a given government law of the land as provided in

Characteristics of civil marriage

1. It is presided over by an official government representative in Uganda; it is either Chief Administrative Officer or the Resident District Commissioner.

2. The intention of the marriage is displayed on a public notice board. This is to enable public to give their views on whether or not the couples can go ahead and marry.

3.  The couples are required to get letters of permission limn their parents in order them to marry.

4. Couples are also required to get letters of introduction from the local council leaders. This is to prove that they are the residents of where they claim to live.

5. Certificates are given after the marriage. This acts as a legal document to show that the man and woman are husband and wife.

6. It officially recognizes monogamy as the ideal type of marriage. The man is allowed to marry only a woman at a time.  It gives room for couples to divorce especially in extreme cases like over fighting marital unfaithfulness.

7. Family property belongs to both the husband and the wife. This is because the two have equal rights in their marriage relationship.



1. The marriage is more legal. The certificates given by the government can prove that two are husband and wife.

2. The marriage is flexible. Among others, it gives room it)! separation and divorce in case of continuous misunderstanding in the marriage.

3. The marriage saves a lot of time. It does not require a lot of preparation.

4. The marriage is relatively cheaper. Only the two can even present themselves before the government representatives during ceremony and besides it may not require expenses like hiring cars and the after parties.

5. Marriage is protected by the laws of the land This enables the couples to enjoy their marital rights.

6. It reduces unnecessary interference before the parents and the relatives. This is because the couples are subject to the state.

7. There is freedom of choice in this marriage.  One is free to choose from any religion, tribe and race as long as there is love.


·      The marriage can be delayed especially if the government representatives are too busy with the state duties.

·      It is possible for the marriage to break easily since it gives room for separation and divorce.

·      The marriage can be destroyed by people with ill intentions .. This is because the marriage intention is displayed on the public notice boards.

·      There can be cultural confusion in the family since the partners are allowed to marry from any culture.

·      The parents are denied their full rights over their children's marriage relationship. This means that the parents are detached from the affairs of their children.

·      There can also be religious confusion in the family since the partners are allowed to marry before any religion.

·      There is no marital guidance and counselling given to the partners. This may mean that the partners can easily make mistakes in their relationship.

MARRIAGE IN THE PRESENT SITUATION (Its Pattern, Characteristics and Understanding)

This concerns the way in which courtship and marriage are being conducted today. It also takes into consideration the different views expressed by different people on courtship and marriage.

Courtship and marriage are considered personal affairs. The parents are no longer involved in choosing marriage partner’s tor their children. The roles of other members of the community.

1. Courtship and marriage requires the consent of both partners involved. The two must agree if there is to be any progress in the courtship and marriage.

2. Monogamy is preferred as the ideal type of marriage. The men prefer to marry only a wife.

3. However polygamy still exists in some communities. Some men tend to marry more than one wife especially in the Islamic faith.  Living single lives is respected and accepted as normal. It is fashionable to some people. However, some people live as singles because of their faith or religion. For example, the priests and the Nuns.

4. Equality between the husband and the wife is emphasized in a marriage relationship.

5. The marriage choices are made by the partners themselves. However, there are cases where friends are used to help in the choice of a partner. Besides, the parents still have some roles to play like giving ad vices on the choice made.

6. Intermarriages are common today. The man or the woman can choose to marry between any tribe and race among others

7. Church marriage preferred to any other type of marriage including customary and state marriage. Women are playing active roles in courtship and marriage. They can choose marriage partners and can as well contribute towards bride wealth.

8. Marriage is increasingly becoming an affair for the rich. Some people tend to organize expensive introduction and wedding ceremonies. Besides, some of the parents tend to over demand for bride price.

For the marriage relationship to be successful two partners must agree to stay together as husband and wife.

1. Divorce is common in marriages today. The man and woman are allowed to interacting as a husband and wife caused by domestic violence and marital unfaithfulness among others.

2. Some couples tend to produce few children. This is attributed to the influence of modern education and the high cost of living.

3. There is a debate of abolishing bride wealth. It is urged that bride wealth enslaves the woman and it make some men to undermine the women

4. Some partners tend to engage in sex before marriage (fornication). This may be due to peer pressure and the influence of pornography among others.

5. Sex education is ignored in modern marriages. This is due to generation gap and the fear that some children may put into practice what they have been taught.

6. Cases of marital unfaithfulness like adultery and prostitution are common in some marriages. This is one of the causes of domestic violence

7. The widows have freedom to decide on how they can lead their lives. Some may choose to remain single while others to marry a person of their own choices.


It refers to a marriage arrangement where there is only a man and a woman relating interacting as a husband and wife

In this marriage, the man is committed to only a woman or a sexual partner. It is a form marriage where there is a husband and a wife.


The couples have enough time for each other. It is possible that the two to be there for each other at any time. This can help to cement and make their love to grow stronger.

The children are given enough parental care and love. This is because parents provide them with needs like shelter, clothes and medical care.

It is easier to make decisions in a monogamous marriage. There being only two adults with authority, it is easier to consult and one another.

It is also easier to discipline the children in a monogamous marriage since they belong to the same mother and father.

It is possible that the couple can sexually satisfy one another. This helps to control the sexual behaviour of both the husband and of the wife.

Monogamous marriage is relatively stable. The husband, the wife as well as the children can easily understand each other.

Monogamous marriage helps to control population pressure. The partners in this marriage tend to produce few children.

Monogamous marriage can be long-lasting and therefore can be permanent. This is especially if there is better understanding and harmony between the husband and wife.

There is greater unity among the family members in a monogamous marriage. The members can easily realize that they are one and understand each other

It is cheaper to maintain a monogamous marriage This is in respect to the provision of basis needs food, clothes and medical care among others,

The members in a monogamous marriage can happiness peace and harmony. It is possible that there can be understanding among the members.


There can be sexual starvation. This is especially on the side of the man in the events of the wife's pregnancy or immediately after the woman has given birth and during menstruation. This can push the man to have sex outside the marriage

There can be limited labour force in such a marriage. This can be due to the few members

It limits a great number of women getting into marriage. This can be a source of marriage instability elsewhere especially if the unmarried women can mess up with the married men.

It may not provide solution to unforeseen problems in marriages like infertility of the woman. This can become a source of conflict in the marriage.

A monogamous marriage is easily threatened by external aggressions. The few members may not be able to defend themselves in case they are attacked by the outsiders.

It limits the extension of the bound of kinship like having many relatives from different places

It may be difficult to console each other especially during difficult moments like sickness and death among others. The few members can easily be taken up by the problems around


This is a marriage arrangement where a man is committed to more than a wife as their husband.

Reasons for Polygamous Marriages Today

Polygamy has continued to exist in the present situation because of the following reasons:

1.        Inability or failure of the first wife to produce children yet the man desires to have children of his own. Such a man may be forced to bring in the second wife who can him children

2.         Some religions encourage polygamous marriage. This is true with Islamic faith where a man is allowed to many up to four wives.    .

3.         Some men marry more than a wife because of the influence of their wealth like money and land. Such men are driven by the thinking that they can take care of their wives with the wealth available.

4.        The desire for a man to be sexually satisfied can force him to marry more than a wife. This is especially if the first wife is sexually weak.

5.        Some men marry more than a wife due to prolonged sickness or poor health of the wife. This is especially if the wife cannot carry on with the family business property because of the sickness.

6.        To some men, polygamy is a source of prestige. They feel proud of it especially if they can provide for them all their needs. This is a case of men who feel that they are respected by the community because of what they are doing.

7.        The cruelty or intolerable behaviour of the first wife may force a man to bring another wife. Such men are driven into marrying the second wife because they are looking peace and happiness in a marriage.

8.        To some men, marrying more than a wife is a way of maintaining and preserving culture. According to an African marriage, polygamy is the preferred type to some men.

9.        Some men are caught up with the thinking and feeling of having made the wrong choice by marrying the first wife. Such men can only be happy and feel satisfied after getting their desired choices.

10.   Some men think that they would have the alternative sex of children after marrying another wife. This is especially if the first wife would have been producing either only boys or girls.

11.   Some men are influenced by their peers to marry more than a wife. Such is a case with a man whose friends are having more than a wife. For him fit among the friends, he is forced to be exactly like them so that there would be some understanding.

12.   To some men, their first wives may become too old and unattractive. Therefore, for them to be joyful in their marriages, they end up bringing another one.

13.   Unwanted pregnancy is also responsible for polygamy today. This is closely connected to having illegal sex outside the marriage resulting into unplanned into pregnancy A responsible man is obliged accept the fact to the point of bringing the woman as his wife.

Advantages of polygamy

1.            It ensures that the husband is sexually satisfied especially if one wife is weak sexually or the event of pregnancy and during menstruation This can make the man to be faithful in his marriage.

2.            It ensures that there is abundant labour force in the family. This is through producing children by the wives thereby easing work.

3.            It gives chance for a greater number of women to get married. This can result into marriage stability especially if all the women are married.

4.            It promotes the African culture of producing many children in a marriage relationship.

5.            5 The members are able to defend themselves in case of any outside aggression.

6.            It ensures that the bond of kinship is promoted. Many people become related and this can promote harmony in the society.

7.            The many members in the family can easily console each other especially during difficult moments like death.

8.            It provides solutions to unforeseen marital problems like the infertility of the woman.

Disadvantages of POLYGAMY

1.         The women in the marriage may be starved sexually as they have to wait to be served by same man. This may lead to marital unfaithfulness especially adultery.

2.         There is disunity in a polygamous marriage. The children tend to follow and give respect only to their real mothers.

3.         It is always difficult to make decisions by the head of the family. The wives may fail agree easily on a particular issue. This leaves some problems may be left unsolved. Consequently, it may lead to family instability.

4.         It is expensive or costly to maintain a polygamous marriage. This is in respect to the provision of basic needs including food and shelter among others.

5.         It is also difficult for the husband to divide his love equally to his wives and their children. This can be a source of conflict in the family.

6.         The marriage is always affected by anti-social behaviour especially the practice of witchcraft. This has always resulted into the feeling of insecurity with some of them becoming mad or losing their lives.

7.         The children in a polygamous family can be indiscipline. It becomes difficult for the man to control the children and make them behave like one people especially if they tend to side with their mothers.          

8.         Polygamous marriage is against God's original plan for marriage. By God creating only a man and woman, God initiated monogamy as the ideal type of marriage.

9.         A polygamous marriage is associated with a lot of domestic violence. Wives fight each other and so do the children. This has always caused bodily injuries and

10.    This marriage usually ends up in divorce especially if many wives cannot agree with other.

11.     It is also difficult to distribute and share the family resources equally to the wives children. This can cause jealousy and envy which may lead into quarrels and tights.

12.     The children in a polygamous marriage can easily be ignored especially by the father. This can lead to hatred towards the father and disrespect in the family


This refers to the sexual intercourse between a man and woman before marriage. It is having sex before getting married.

Causes of Fornication

1.            Peer pressure can lead to fornication. This is especially if all the friends are involved in such an act Therefore, for one to tit in the group, he or she is forced to behave in the same way.

2.            Others have sex before marriage because of curiosity riley are driven by the desire to discover the secret behind sexual intercourse especially after being told,

3.            Poor dressing code can lure a person into having sex before marriage. Dressing’s miniskirts, "see-me-through" and body tight among others are so revealing that they can arouse the sexual feeling of people.

4.            Some people are forced into sex before marriage so that they can protect They having sex with one another can keep them permanently in the relationship.

5.            Fornication is caused by the thought of trying to prove love the partners have each other.

6.            Fornication is caused by the influence of pornographic materials like blue movies materials tend to create the desire for having sexual intercourse.

7.    Some people are influenced by the presence of contraceptives like pills and condoms.

8.            They feel protected from sexually related problems like unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases including AIDS

9.            Some people have high of libido (sexual drive). This tends to force them into sexual intercourse.

10.       Some people have the attitude that practice makes perfect or that they can learn by doing. For them, it is by engaging in sexual intercourse that they can gain experience needed in their future marriages

11.       To some people, sex before marriage is a way to testing one's fertility for future use in marriage.

12.       Inadequate sex education can cause fornication, In this case, it becomes normal for such people to engage in sex because of ignorance.

13.       It can also be caused by permissiveness. Too much freedom can be misused for having sexual intercourse,

14.       Some people with such strong desires for material things like money can easily be taken advantage of especially if such materials are availed to them through sexual intercourse.

 Problems Associated With Fornication

1.         It is highly possible that it can result into unwanted pregnancy with its associated problems like abortion.

2.         It exposes a person to the risk of acquiring sexually transmitted diseases including HIV/AIDS and gonorrhea. This can leave a person in a state of poor health and consequently, he or she might not be able to do his normal routines,

3.         It can lead to parental rejection especially if the parents have disapproved that behaviour. Such a person may not be able to cater fix his or her needs property.

4.         It is sinful before God, This is because it is against the divine intention for sex which ought to be for pro-creation, mutual love and comfort.

5.         It can make one to lose respect and self-dignity in the community. This makes a person to become a social misfit.

6.         It can make one to become a second hand partner in future marriage. Such a person may not be able to enjoy his or her marriage and this can become a source of conflict.

7.         It is also possible that one may not be settle down as husband and wife in      future. As a result, a person is only used as a tool for having sexual intercourse.

8.         There can be misunderstanding between the partners especially as one fails to satisfy the needs of the other. This is one of the root causes of violence in such a relationship.

9.         It can lead to school drop outs of young children. This may leave them      a state of illiteracy and inability to cater for their needs in the future.

10.    It leads to loss of virginity in young boys and girls. This may leave a traumatic experience on such young children. This may create fear of the opposite sex.

11.    It can lead to imprisonment. This is especially after having sex with the under aged.

Divorce and Marriage Instability

Divorce refers to a legal termination of a marriage relationship between the husband and the wife.

In other words, it is a legal dissolution of marriage where the husband and the interacting as it was before. In short, divorce means bringing a marriage relationship to an end.

Divorce is different from separation because the relationship permanently dissolved. However, separation is a temporary break up in a marriage relationship and, therefore, it gives room for reconciliation.


The following are the causes of divorce or marriage instability in the present situation.

1.          Poverty causes divorce. It makes difficult for the couples to provide the basic needs including shelter, food thus leading to poor standard of living,

2.          Domestic violence is responsible for divorce today. Such kind of violence is associated with problems like bodily injuries and sometimes death, Therefore, in a situation where one cannot contain it anymore, the two are forced part ways.

3.          Excessive drinking of alcohol can cause divorce. Drinking excessively leaves a person sickly, makes one a social misfit and some become violent and thus a danger to one's partner.

4.          Parental interference or negative influence of the relatives from either side can result into divorce. Such in-laws keep on criticizing either the husband or wife and if one of the two can take side with the relatives, the marriage is deemed to fail.

5.          It is caused by marital unfaithfulness in the form of adultery and prostitution This makes a partner to feel betrayed especially if he or she      been so committed to the marriage.

6.          Barrenness Of childlessness causes divorce. This is especially if one partner to have a child of his or her own but the other cannot give, This makes such a partner to begin looking for ways to have a child or children outside the marriage. This is Blade worse if the partners begin blaming each other.

7.          Having bastard children in a marriage can cause divorce. It is possible that the couples can easily disagree when it comes to the discipline of the bastard. Above all a partner can decide to ignore the child while providing for other biological children to disappointment of the other. This becomes a source of conflict in the marriage.

8.          Divorce is being caused by the advanced technology and the use of mass media including internet with its social network like Facebook and twitter. Besides, the use of cell phones is mining many marriages, some form of communication through such networks is destructive to marriages.

9.          Political differences can also cause divorce .The couples get divided alongside their political parties. This can cause quarrels and misunderstanding with the result being divorce.

10.     Differences in the level of education can lead the couples into a divorce. It tends to create barrier in the level of communication between the couple. It is possible that a partner can undermine the other.

11.     The emancipation of women is causing divorce today. It has empowered the women to lead independent lives. However, some husbands feel threatened by such development as they think they should have full control over their wives.

12.     Religious differences can cause divorce. This makes it difficult for the couple to come to a common stand on the religion to which their children should belong. This causes misunderstanding and division basing on religious line.

13.     Cultural differences as a result of mixed marriages are responsible for divorce. It tends to cause clashes in the ways of doing things in the marriage. When the two cannot resolve their differences or come to a common understanding, they are forced to bring the marriage to an end.

14.     The indiscipline of some children can cause divorce. This is true especially if couple begin to point fingers and blame one another for the indiscipline of the children.

15.     Prolonged illnesses or diseases especially the incurable ones like cancer, sickle cells and HIV/AIDS among others are responsible for breakages and instability in some marriages. Apart from making a partner incapable of contributing towards the development of the family, one may blame another for the acquisition of the disease.

16.     Age differences between the couples can be a source of instability thereby resulting into divorce. A huge age difference can lead to misunderstanding because the two belong to different generations with different perception of life.

17.     Anti-social behavior like witchcraft can cause divorce. It creates the feeling of insecurity, mistrust and leads to violent behaviour towards one another.

18.     Failure to satisfy the sexual feelings of each other can cause marriage instability and divorce. This encourages cheating with its associated problems like fighting and continuous absence of a partner from another.


We are looking the kind of Christian advice to Couples who are intending to Divorce.

1. God's origin plan for marriage was to Blake it permanent, He created human beings both male and female for them to be complimentary and companions

2. It was God's will that a man leaves his parents and is united to his wife. This means that the two are inseparable (Genesis 2: 21-24).

3. Faithfulness was encouraged in marriage for permanency in the relationship. This was reflected in the symbolic marriage of Prophet Hosea and his wife Gomer.

4. Forgiveness and reconciliation was encouraged in a marriage relationship like Hosea who forgave and reconciled with his wife Gomer.

5. God hates divorce to the point that he could not accept the sacrifices offered to him because the people of Israel were breaking their promises (Malachi 2: 13-16).

6. A man who divorces his wife breaks his promise to her as a partner. This is sign unfaithfulness to one's wife and before God.

7. Marriage among the Israelites was a covenant which had to be long and everlasting. This was demonstrated in a marriage relationship between Hosea and Gomer.

8. Upon marriage, the husband and the wife become one body and spirit Therefore divorce violates the oneness in a couple.

9. According to Jesus, what God has put together should be permanent He discouraged listeners from separating a man and woman (Mark 10: 2-12).

10.    Jesus that whoever divorces his wife and marries commits adultery against the wife. This is a sin before God.

11.    Jesus emphasized the law of love as a basis of all relationships including marriage.

12.    Jesus considered marriage to an occasion of joy. He changed water into wine on a wedding at Cana in order to keep the couple and the guest joyful.

13.     Saint Paul gave a description of leve should exist in a marriage relationship. Accordingly love is patient, kind and does not keep a record of wrongs among others. Therefore, a man who loves his wife has no reason to divorce her.

14.    Saint Paul encouraged a husband and a wife to stay together for the so that they are acceptable to God (1 Corinthians 7.16).

15.    Saint Peter said that the     between a husband and a wife is the same as the union between Christ and the Church. It should, therefore, be permanent of their children

Courtship and marriage in African traditional society

(Understanding Patterns and Characteristics)

·      It was a customary type of marriage conducted in accordance to the customs of a society. The parents of the boy and girl could come to a common understanding  agreement followed by the giving of bride wealth

·      Marriage was a communal affair. The parents and relatives were actively involved marriage affairs of the children through offering sex education, making choice or a partner and contributing towards the bride wealth.

·      Marriage was heterosexual. It had to be between people of opposite sexes accepted and recognized the marriage of a man and a woman.

·      Marriage was sealed by the payment of bride wealth. This meant that before its payment, the partners could stay from each other.

·      Marriage was exogamous It had to be between people of different clans Marrying from the same clan was sinful because the two were brothers and sisters

·      Polygamy was highly practiced This had a number of benefits like providing wealth, labour and it ensured sexual  satisfaction on the side of the man.

·      Marriage was a process. It involved a number of continuous activities before, during and after the marriage ceremony. Such activities included exchange of services and visit among.

·      Marriage was compulsory for every adult. Without getting married a person remained a child and therefore excluded from adult work

·      Marriage was a social affair built on a permanent basis. The couples were expected to keep their agreement forever until death.     

·      Marriage was taken to be a religious duty for every normal person. It involved blessings from the ancestors. This was done through offering sacrifices.

·      Marriage was a starting point for a personal immortality (living forever) through producing children.

·      It was only in marriage that sex was allowed. Virginity was therefore respected as one was getting married. This ruled out fornication.

·      Upon getting married, the woman had to leave her parents' home and stay with the family of the husband.

·      Marriage was protected by many customs, taboos and superstitions. This was at encouraging faithfulness among the couples.

·      Marriage was only allowed within the same tribe. Intermarriage was forbidden. Doing the contrary could lead to the couple being isolated for fear of diluting their cultures.

·      The widows were inherited. Some communities believed that a woman married to family belonged to everyone in there. Therefore, upon the death of the husband, one man would be allowed to take over her.

·      Marriage was a gateway to maturity. It showed that one was an adult would therefore enjoy all the privileges associated with being an adult like respect.

·       Marriage was taken to be a way of promoting social bond. It brought people together and made then relatives. Therefore, it helped to expand and add on the already existing family of the husband.

Choice of a Partner in African Tradition

The following are the ways through which marriage partners were chosen in African traditional society.

·      The children had freedom to choose their own partners. In such a case, it was a boy to show interest in a girl and make an approach.

·      The parents could also make choices on behalf of their children. This was by identifying a potential marriage partner for their children. Some could approach the family of the girl and declare their intentions.

·      However, the parents could only approve the choice made by their children had to respect the views of their parents about their choices.

·       Some choices made included capturing the girl.     This was arranged and      organized by the boys carefully identifying the girl. The bride wealth was taken later after parents acceptance

·      There was also use of a go-between or mediator. The boy intending to marry used someone or a messenger to declare his intention.

·      In some societies, choices were Blade by 'making the girl and boy to have a fight (wrestling). The choice could only be approved upon the boy wrestling the girl down.

·      In some cultures, choices were made through elopement .The boy and girl were could secretly begin living together.

· Some people made choices out of excitement especially during beer parties. In such a case, the parents of either the girl or boy could    away their daughter- or son as a result of happiness.

·      In some cultures, there was a practice of booking pregnancy. The parents could agree to exchange their children for marriage in case fortune could allow them to be of the opposite sex

Qualities Considered for a Marriage Partner in African Tradition

The following aspects were considered when choosing marriage partners in African tradition

·      They considered the family background of either the boy or girl. They put on morality of a family

·      The health status partner was of great concern. Attention was directed towards tracing whether some kind of disease like leprosy and sickle cells existed in the family linage.

·      Virginity was an important aspect in choosing marriage partners. The girl was expected to be virgin. Virginity commanded respect and sometimes rewards to the family as proved the proper upbringing of the girl.

·      The African considered the character of the boy or girl. An ideal choice considered one with qualities like respect, honest and kindness among others

·   The clan was also considered. They partners were expected to be of different clans as those the same clan were brothers and sister

·  The hospitality of the partner was one of the qualities taken into consideration an ideal choice was person who was welcoming, generous and could     along easily and freely with everyone.

·      The beauty of the girl was a quality the Africans looked for. Those with waistlines and beads around their necks, arms and the waist were admired.

·  The economic status particularly that of the boy was important when choosing a marriage partner. Wealth such as cattle and goats proved that the family was capable of taking care of the incoming wife.

·      The cultural background of each partner was considered, there had to be some harmony and understanding in the two cultures,

·      The ability of each partner to work was considered, each partner had to be active when doing domestic duties like cultivation and cooking food among others.

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A complete talking Book for Uganda certificate of Education