Shaunie O’Neal and Houston’s The Lighthouse Church Pastor Keion Henderson went from making their love Instagram official earlier this year to making it official official by announcing their engagement last week.
Henderson popped the question on November 11, at 11:11 p.m., in line with their practice of calling or texting each other at 11:11 every night (often to pray). He asked for her hand at what looked like a romantic dinner with loved ones, which was followed by a fireworks display.
The couple shared the news with PEOPLE, posting photos of him down on one knee, she in shock, with the caption, “1 Corinthians LOVE NEVER FAILS ❤️ 11/11/11”
“This was one of the most magical and special days of my life, being someone that had never officially been proposed to — like no down on one knee and asked ‘will you marry me’ moment,” O’Neal told the publication. “And honestly I’m the person that thought I would never in my lifetime experience a love like this. Everything about that night was incredibly amazing.”
“I wouldn’t change a single thing,” she added. “As a matter of fact, I wish I could experience it over and over again. Keion is an extraordinary man of God. He’s wise, he’s supportive, he’s so loving and attentive. He loves me and my children in a way that has changed my life and my heart. He makes me want to be better every day. And I pray that I do the same for him. This love is FOREVER and I’m honored and overjoyed to do forever with him.”
Henderson also noted that he’d also never experienced a love like the one he has with his future wife.
“I’ve never been more loved than I am right now,” he said. “I’ve never met a more supportive person in my life. There is an inseparable connection that is undeniable between Shaunie and I. I am unwilling to let anyone else occupy her space. The love and respect we share for each other contributes to our ever-evolving humility and growth. Which ultimately makes us more like God. Who wouldn’t want a spouse that makes you more like The Creator? She simply brings out the best in me and wants the best for me. Any love that accomplishes all of that naturally is worth pursuing. Our engagement is the beginning of a new day.”
If you’re wondering how these two got to this point. A quick rundown is that they met and knew each other professionally before deciding to date nearly two years ago. They went public with their relationship in July of 2021, and ever since, they’ve shared videos and photos of their life together, which includes going to events together, starting a lifestyle fashion brand (KESH) and bonding with each other’s children. Now, they’re taking their love down the aisle.
This will be the second marriage for both parties. O’Neal has four kids from her marriage to Shaquille O’Neal, and a son from a previous relationship, while Henderson has a 9-year-old daughter from a previous marriage.