Whatís Up In Ghana?
Whatís Up In Ghana
Ron: Joseph, could you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Joseph: I was born in Ghana and raised as a Catholic. I knew nothing about Adventism until I met a brother who shared with me about the law of God, and the gospel of Jesus whereby I could be saved from the guilt and power of sin freely through the grace of Christ. I decided to obey the law of God, including the seventh-day Sabbath and began looking for a church to go to. I joined a study group in 1979 and got to know a man form America, Brother Bankhead who sent me some books including some Ellen White books. I started to study them. That study group has developed into the Accra church of historic Seventh-day Adventist believers. More recently, I have been in the United States for about four years working to support myself and help the work in Africa. I plan to go back to Africa soon.
Ron: Why do you plan to go back to Africa?
Joseph: First of all two or three people have said to me, "Joseph, what are you doing here? You have to go to Africa and work there." Secondly as I have been praying, I believe the Holy Spirit has impressed me to go back to Africa. Finally, all I have studied here, coming to the Bible training course here at Steps to Life and many other things, I can use to help the church there. Our goal is to reach not only the entire region of Ghana, but the surrounding countries with the three Angelsí messages. While the Adventists who are faithful to the historic message that God gave to Adventism are attempting in every way to spread the three angelsí messages, they are in need of assistance if they are going to reach the entire population.
Ron: What are the best ways that we can help them?
Joseph: First of all they do not have a place to invite non-Adventists to meetings or church services. You might say, why donít they just establish home churches as in America and other parts of the world. Well, first of all, most of the members live in small one room houses or apartments. This one room is where the whole family lives. With four to eight people living in a one room apartment sharing a bathroom with the occupants of other apartments and sometimes sharing a public kitchen, inviting people there for a home church is not feasible.
John: So, they need a place to worship and conduct evangelistic services?
Joseph: That is correct. Secondly they need a place to organize and plan their work. They need a place to produce literature, for the world, and also communications for the churches.
Ron: The building that we are helping them to buy will not only satisfy the need for a place for production of materials, preparation and distribution of communications, but also it can function as a church, and one part of it will be used as a sanitarium, and another part for a clothing distribution center.
Joseph: We hope that these new facilities will be used by the Lord and our faithful people to bring a great evangelistic thrust in Ghana. Our people have fasted and prayed for a long time and we see in these developments an answer to our prayers that the three angelsí message may be finished soon in Ghana.
John: In what other areas may we help the work to progress more rapidly in Ghana?
Joseph: As you reported in your News Notes a few months ago, Rose has been operating an orphanage in Ghana. With almost no facilities, as photographed in your News Notes, she has been taking care of 16 orphans (children who are adoptable) and many other poor children, providing them with food and clothing etc. She is working very hard, from early to late to earn the money to support these orphans and poor children. With the help that you are planning to provide for the orphanage, the living conditions for these children will become much more healthfulóthey will not have the constant exposure to the elements, and also it will be much easier to keep the children clean.
Ron: For a more complete explanation of the situation about the orphanage read our August News Notes. In addition to the orphans being cared for, there are many poor children who would be in a terrible situation if it were not for the self-sacrificing efforts of Rose in caring for them. The orphanage also cares for some mothers and their children who have no means of support. This is a noble work. John Huss was in this same situation once. He was an orphan (no father) but his poor mother thankfully knew how to pray. Read the whole story in Great Controversy page 98.
Joseph: How close are we to being able to build this orphanage and help the brothers in Ghana to purchase the churches that they so desperately need?
Ron: We have raised over 75% of the funds needed to build the orphanage, $30,000. Steps to Life supporters have also sent over $40,000 for the churches. Rod Clark is planning to go to Africa this winter to oversee the construction of the orphanage. However, I want to know, are there other things that we can do to help our brothers in Ghana to speed up the work of giving the three angelsí messages to West Africa.
Joseph: We are in need of literature and materials to give to the people to help them understand present truth. I understand that you are planning to help us with literature too, is that right?
Ron: Thatís exactly right. We have received money for literature for Ghana and we are hoping to send a shipment of tracts not only in English but also in Twi. Two people have donated slide projectors to help them in their evangelistic meetings. People have sent in over 200 pounds of clothes.
I have to say that I am so thankful for the way Godís people have supported this project and I believe they will finish giving the necessary funds to complete this very important gospel endeavors. I would like to end this interview by sharing a quote from Christís Object Lessons, 351. It says, "Money has great value, because it can do great good. In the hands of Godís children it is food for the hungry, drink for the thirsty, and clothing for the naked. It is a defense for the oppressed, and a means of help to the sick. But money is of no more value than sand, only as it is put to use in providing for the necessities of life, in blessing others, and advancing the cause of Christ."
November 1995 Table of Contents