From the Superintendent’s DESK (Portland-Oregon Reports)
John Musgrave and Bayo Adeniran arrived in Accra, Ghana, mid-morning Saturday accompanied by two from the West and Central Africa (WECA) headquarters: James Olaleye, Director of Welfare Services, and Titus Itanola, Deputy Director of Missons. They were greeted at the airport by John Bekoe, the Ghana District Superintendent, and Jane Akazue who is the widow of Brother Bayo’s predecessor, and now assists with the Ghana work.
They went directly to the Aplaku church, which is the Ghana headquarters and host site of the annual camp meeting. The property is situated on a hillside and the front is lined with royal palm trees. Adding to the beauty of the landscape, Sunday school children were waiting to greet them by singing “Happy Welcome” and playing wooden flutes. The children also presented them with flowers and Ghanaian shawls. The team then went to the prayer room where they were introduced to the many workers, ministers, and board members who had gathered for the occasion.
In the afternoon, they met with the Ghana management team and heard reports from the leaders of the six zones that make up the Ghana work: Accra, Ada, Central, Eastern, Northern, and Western. Brother John said there are fifty locations in all, and the main challenge has been to raise up qualified workers in order to expand into additional locations. He said understanding their struggles would give anyone an appreciation for what they have already accomplished.
The team concluded Saturday with a visit to our LA church where John Okine is the pastor. Several had gathered there to greet them and share a time of fellowship. Brother John said the church is located on a small commercial lot and is complete with a sanctuary, children’s hall, prayer room, pastor’s office, and Sunday school class. It serves about 120 on Sundays.
On Sunday morning, the team arrived at the Aplaku church early to spend time in the prayer room before going upstairs to the sanctuary for the Sunday school general assembly. It opened with two rows of children marching in on either side of the platform, singing “Jesus Loves the Little Children” followed by “Welcome to Ghana.” They then presented a program of songs interspersed with matching Scripture recitations. These included “Faith of Our Fathers” followed by a Scripture on faith, and “Something More than Gold” followed by a Scripture on prosperity. For their final number, they sang “There Is an Ensign,” and then marched out to “The Lord Will Bless.”
For the Sunday school class time, each department was divided into language groups that included English, Ewe, Fanti, French, Ga, and Twi. The lesson was on the “Healing of the Ten Lepers”. In all, they had 946 in attendance for Sunday school.
The morning service included beautiful music. The orchestra played “He Lives on High” and the choir sang “They that Wait.” A quartet also provided “Welcome,” and for the last special, a soloist sang “There’s a Sweet Spirit in this Place.”
There were 1115 in attendance, with three or four first-time visitors, and all responded to the Spirit by moving to the altar before the invitation was given. Brother John said there was indeed a sweet Spirit felt, and about a half-hour later, after everyone had gathered outside for photos, it seemed that nobody wanted to leave.
The team finished the day by having dinner with the Ghana board members and local management team. Brother John said it was an opportunity to thank them for the blessing of being with them and for their gracious and kind hospitality. As he concludes this trip to Africa, he said he has felt right at home with our churches in Ghana and Nigeria; the people have been just wonderful.