Religion of 2014-04-21

Christians mark Easter with church activities

Christians in the country yesterday joined their counterparts in the world to commemorate Easter, the day that marks the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

While the Catholic and protestant churches marked the festivities with baptism of new converts and vigil services, the Pentecostal and Charismatic churches marked the day with the climax of conventions and camp meetings.

Most church auditoriums and parks were filled with regular and occasional worshippers, dressed in resplendent white and singing praises to glorify God and extolling the power of His resurrection.

Rosemary Ardayfio reports from the Rev. Henry Wharton Memorial Methodist Church that the Rev. Patience Owusu-Boadi said Christ’s Resurrection signified a new life for Christians.

In a sermon titled, “Living the Resurrected Life”, Rev. Owusu-Boadi emphasised that having a new life in Christ implied that Christians should renew their attitudes and deeds and strive to be more Christlike.

She further called on the congregation to work to overcome whatever differences they had, both with members in the church and those in their communities to foster peaceful co-existence.

“If we continue with our vices, then the resurrection will not signify any change in our lives,” she added.

At the Holy Spirit Cathedral, Lydia Ezit reports that the Metropolitan Archbishop of Accra, Most Reverend Gabriel Charles Palmer-Buckle, said “the resurrection of Jesus Christ is about getting out of the old life to a new life by loving one another”.

The resurrection, he said, offered believers another chance to start a new life and urged Christians to learn to forgive when they were offended.

The Minister of the Anointed One Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana at Sakumono, Rev. Emmanuel Adu Tetteh, baptised some members of the congregation on Easter Sunday, writes Salome Donkor.

Preaching the sermon, he said the resurrection of Christ manifested God’s power.

He said Christians needed to make a request to Christ to be with them in all their endeavours, adding that “when Christ comes to your life, your ignorance will give way to knowledge and He will be your host and not the guest”.

Kwame Asare Boadu reports from Kumasi that the Primate and Metropolitan Archbishop of the Church of the Province of West Africa (Anglican Communion), Most Rev. Prof. Daniel Yankah Sarfo, admonished Christians to let the power of the resurrection of Jesus Christ manifest in their lives.

He said as followers of Christ, "we are baptised into the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus and as we renew our baptismal vows, we are being reminded that in our baptism we resurrect into a new life of righteousness".

Preaching at the Easter Service at the St. Cyprian Anglican Cathedral in Kumasi, Most. Rev Sarfo said the resurrection of Christ was a tremendous event and Christians needed to be constantly reminded of it.

At the Calvary Methodist Church, Community Three, Tema, the Very Rev. Rosebud M. Adjaottor advised Christians to ponder over the resurrection power of Jesus and allow it to rekindle them to restore the sanity of their faith, reports Albert Sam.

She said the resurrection story was not only interesting and exciting but offered Christians newness of life in Jesus Christ.

Very Rev. Adjaottor also advised Christians to gossip about the gospel and not the people.

At the St Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, Awoshie, Rev Fr Anthony Bezo, focusing on the stone that had been rolled away from the entrance of the tomb, said it showed that God was in control and that "death has no final say", reports Rebecca Kwei.

He said the stone represented the anger of the enemy; the stone had blocked the women and disciples from seeing Jesus.

"A Christian is one who sees beyond the stone; one of hope who believes that when he is crushed down he will arise, walk out resurrected and refreshed. One day, that stone that has blocked you, impeding your visibility will be rolled back," Rev Fr Bezo said.

Vincent Amenuveve reports that residents of the Bolgatanga Municipality in the Upper East Region marked the event with various church activities including Easter Conventions and vigils.

At the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, the Chairman of the Upper Presbytery of the church, Reverend Esmond Nagba, encouraged Christians not to give up in any situation they found themselves.

According to him, Ghanaians must be able to go through the struggles of life and have the belief that they would be victorious at the end of the day just as Jesus Christ did and today "human beings are the benefactors".

At the Christ Revival Church’s easter convention at the St John’s Grammar School in Accra, Rev. John Botwe urged Ghanaians to believe in the power of Jesus to transform and change the current economic crisis the country was faced with, reports Salomey Appiah.

“The leadership of the Church should arise and pray for our nation to bear the good fruit the Lord has made for us and also to ensure peace and unity on the land,” he added.

From Koforidua, A. Kofoya-Tetteh reports that at the Jackson Park, the New Juaben Zone of the Church of Pentecost had its convention on the theme “Jesus Christ-Exalted Prince and Saviour”, which was attended by hundreds of worshippers.

The Zonal Head, Apostle Anthony K. Miah, who presided over the gathering, entreated Christians, especially members of the church, to be humble and act just like Jesus Christ who died on the cross to save humanity. Apostle Miah said all human beings were of the same status; as such nobody should look down on the other irrespective of one’s knowledge or wealth. Benjamin Xornam Glover reports that at the First Baptist Church, Tema, the Senior Pastor, Rev. Osei Kwabena Nkrahene, said the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ gave Christians hope and empowered them to live righteous lives. He asked Christians to let the activities and teachings of the passion week through to the resurrection of Christ reflect in their daily activities and duties.

Churches in Cape Coast marked Easter with conventions, camp meetings and church services, reports Zadok Kwame Gyesi.

The Baptist Church held a convention to mark the season at the Praise Baptist branch at Kakumdo in Cape Coast while the Lighthouse Churches in the Central Region also held a four-day camp meeting dubbed, "Something in the Blood".

Preaching the sermon on Easter Sunday, Bishop Jake Godwyll of the Lighthouse Chapel International said as much as death was inevitable, Christians must overcome death by accepting Jesus as their Lord and Saviour.

Prophet Francis Aubyn of the Victory Bible Church urged Christians to see Easter as a time anything dead in their lives would resurrect.

At the Gethsemane Methodist Church at Mamprobi in Accra, Mr Stephen Obeng Amoako of the Trinity Theological College said the resurrection brought restoration, transformation, elevation and victory to Christians, reports Vida Essel.

He urged Christians never to give up in the face of challenges, since God had risen to change their situations for the better. The congregation sang praises to God for giving His son as atonement for their sins.