This is not the kind of outfit most people slip into on a lazy Sunday morning, but while everyone else is nursing a dirty hangover and reading the horoscope section of the Sunday papers, Harold Sutton-Koroma is dressing up for church. Harold’s wife, Reverend Christiana Sutton-Koroma is the big boss of St. Paul’s Evangelical parish in Freetown and sitting in the front pew each week eagerly listening to her sermons you are guaranteed to find her handsome other half Harold. “My wife is the pastor here, so I have to look respectable for her and the congregation”, says Harold.
Harold jazzes up his morning suit with a red cummerbund, handkerchief and bow tie and says he always polishes his shoes.
Photo courtesy Tom Dixon
That’s Harold with his bae Rev. Christiana. And what’s it like to be married to a Reverend? “She is my wife it is just normal for me. I do many things as well in my life, I am a fashion designer, a driving instructor and a community priest which means I am not yet ordained but one day I will be”.
The people of Sierra Leone were offered some brief respite from last weekend’s nationwide lockdown when the Government allowed all Muslims and Christians across the country to leave their homes and attend their respective Friday Jumah Salat prayer and Palm Sunday Service. Freetown beautician Aisha took full advantage of the opportunity to get out of the house and trotted off to her local parish’s three-hour gathering without hesitation.
Church is not only a place where you can say hello to god, it’s also a great opportunity to dress the hell up and flirt with whoever you have your eye on that particular week. While Aisha didn’t meet her future husband in the pews of St Antony’s Church, there’s no denying that she looked glamorous while trying. Aisha’s glittery blue Africana came from over the border in Guinea and she shopped the spectacular matching head wrap in Freetown. The exotic furry animal dangling from her arm is actually a handbag leftover from her own last season stock (she is also a fashion trader). Aisha refers to the look as ‘Beauty Queen’ and I have to agree, those words sum her up perfectly.
And how does Aisha feel about the lockdown? “I am ok with the lock down if we have a good result from it. We will do anything extra if it means Ebola is finished in this country, we just want it to GO!”.