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28.10.2008 Religion

Youth urged to get involved in church

By The Statesman

It is up to young people to carry the church forward through future generations, a former Attorney General said.

Speaking at the Anglican Young People's Association 4th Biennial Delegates Conference of the Accra East Archdeaconry on Saturday, J Ayikoi Otoo lambasted Christian youth for "living for the flesh' and treating the church as a social gathering hall.

 'This is not what youth groups are supposed to be doing in churches,' he said.

'Don"t think that what you're doing God is not seeing. It's important that you serve God with all your heart.'

The conference, which was on the theme 'The Role of the Youth in the Development of the Church and Society - Past, Present and Future,' brought together youth groups from neighboring parishes to brainstorm ways in which to increase their relevance in the ongoing future of the church.

 It was held at St Peter's Anglican Church, Nungua.

Mr Otoo, a Methodist, also stressed the importance of an education in a young person's life.

'You can only move up the social ladder if you're educated,' he told the delegates and observers at the conference. 'It is only literate people who can aspire to these heights.

'The rich do not owe the poor anything,' he continued. 'You can be what they are if you take your lessons seriously.'

He also implored young people not to waste their youth, stressing that 'it's only a time, it passes.'

Mr Otoo is the NPP Parliamentary candidate for the Krowor Constituency in the upcoming 2008 presidential and parliamentary elections.

He served as Attorney General and Minister for Justice under President John Kufuor between 2005 and 2006.

The upcoming elections were not forgotten at the conference. Speaking on behalf of the Tema Archdeaconry Council, Francis Acquah called on his fellow youth to demonstrate their civic responsibility and vote in the December 7th elections.

'Let us all be ambassadors of peace during the presidential and parliamentary elections,' he pleaded. 'I know the good Lord will provide us with a leader who will guide us into peace and prosperity.'

Also speaking at the conference was Reverend Father Abraham Elijah Quarshie, Parish Priest of St. Peter's, who warned the youth not to abandon their 'first love,' God.

 'My prayer is that we will go back and visit our first love so that the church can move forward.'

At the end of the conference the following officers were elected to steer the affairs of the Association for the next two years.

They were Elias Sherwood Smith, President, Gilbert Boyefio, Vice President, Samuel Kwame Obeng, Secretary, Lillian Adjei-Laryea, Assistant Secretary, Eric Masopeh, Treasurer, and Franz Wolf, Organizer.