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22.12.2007 Business & Finance

Offertory: Value For Coins And Notes

By Akosua Kesewa Gyampo -

I remember, a long time ago, when I was in church and the priest on that day delivered a long and impressive sermon about giving and receiving.

He exhorted us to give generously to the church so that we would receive tenfolds of blessing from God. He quoted excerpts from the Bible to support his exhortation. We the believers nodded in agreement and said Amen, whenever he prompted us.

As offertory was the next item to follow his sermon, he took the opportunity to inform us of the need for more money to meet running costs of the diocese. In this respect, the good pastor recommended that we shall wean ourselves off the tradition of dropping coins in the collection bowl and that currency notes were better because they made less noise.

Obviously the advice went down well with believers, for the next time I was in church, the offertory that took place showed a considerable improvement in the total collection for the day. Most people donated in currency notes.

Happily too, at the time, the value of the cedi was down and almost about 80 people could give one thousand cedi note without a wince.

Today, things are different. The new currency in circulation has the lowest currency note as GH¢1.00 which translates into ten thousand cedis. I anticipate a slight problem with those of us who believe in giving when January comes along.

You see, not all of us can drop GH¢ cedi note into the collection bowl. In other words, ten thousand cedis is still a lot of money to many. So what do we do?

I have grown to believe that God has a way of resolving problems for His children. I believe that next time I go to church, the priest will deliver a sermon and say that 'whether coins or notes, the value is the same'. This will translate as: 'Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, a fifty pesewa coin is acceptable in the face of God but one Ghana cedi note is still better since it will not make noise as you drop it in the collection bowl.'

He will prompt the congregation at this point and we will all respond in unison: 'Amen!'

I am not a prophet of doom, but if he does not do that, those among us believers who cannot afford putting the equivalent of ten thousand cedis in the pastorial collection bowl will reluctantly wean themselves off attending church on Sundays.

But, God forbid, if that should happen, the church will find itself in dire straits. But God is merciful and He will provide a way to mankind to resolve problems like this and that.