23.04.2005 Regional News

Help develop the country churches urged

23.04.2005 LISTEN

Koforidua, April 23, GNA - The Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church, Ghana, Most Rev. Dr Robert Aboagye-Mensah, has said it was the responsibility of the Church to be interested in the affairs of the development of the country.

"The Church is made up of people living in this country, therefore, it is wrong for us to assume that matters of the state be left to only the politicians, because even those we call politicians belong to the church," he said, adding, "we have been charged by God to call society to order."

Most. Rev. Aboagye-Mensah was delivering the opening address of the 9th Biennial Conference of the Connexional Methodist Guild at Koforidua, on Friday on the theme, "Send Me And I Will Go." He asserted that the "Church is the light of the world" and called on all Christians to live up to the expectation of speaking the truth to ensure that the right thing was done.

The Presiding Bishop noted that by the nature of the calling of Christians, "the Church could not sit down unconcerned as the country goes bad", saying, "because we are the light of the world and must act as the beacon of hope in hopeless times."

Touching on the development of the Methodist Church, Most Rev. Aboagye-Mensah, called on the big churches not to live in affluent buildings at the neglect of the smaller congregations. He said there was the need for bigger churches to assist deprived churches in their quest to achieve stronger and better religious faith in the country.

Most Rev. Aboagye-Mensah charged members of the Guild to exhibit humility and decency in the way they talk among themselves for people in the "world" to emulate them.

He reminded them that, as Christians, it was their Godly duty to affect society by lending support and strengthening the feeble in society to improve upon their lot.

The Presiding Bishop referred them to the theme of the conference and charged them to redouble their evangelisation efforts so as to win more souls for Christ over the next five years into the Methodist Church.

The Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Yaw Barimah, in a speech read for him, urged the members of the Guild to remain united as one "body in Christ" contributing meaningfully to the growth of the church. "You must desist from serving as a pressure group that would make unrealistic demands on the wider Church and cause its disintegration", he cautioned.

He said irrespective of their individual differences, political, ethnic or social, they should fight for the development of the church and the nation and advised the Guilders to refrain from undesirable life-styles and join the fight against HIV/AIDS.

In his welcoming address, the President of the Connexional Methodist Guild, Mr Isaac Kwame Adu, said there was the need for the Guilders to critically examine the cost involved in responding to any call that may come their way and asked them to live above reproach in any environment they found themselves.

He said they could only respond favourably to the call of God and the society only when they were ready to do away with their bad attitudes such as pride, jealousy and drunkenness. "Sell your undesirable clothes (behaviours) and buy and put on better clothes in the form of humility," he added. 450 delegates from all over the country are attending the 3-day conference.

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