Local Missionaries in Ghana
In West Africa with a southern coast along the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Guinea, Ghana is multi-ethnic and religiously diverse. While 62.2 percent of the population identify as Christian, the Muslim population is 22.4 percent and growing due to Islamist influences and funding from the Middle East. Moreover, nearly 15 percent of the population holds to ancestral, animistic beliefs and rituals, and these ethnic religions influence those who identify as Muslim and Christian.
English is the official language (Ghana won independence from Great Britain in 1957), but the government recognizes 11 other ethnic languages, and French is taught in schools as the country is surrounded by Francophone countries.
Christian ministries native to the country are involved in church planting, discipleship, Jesus Film screenings, literacy, sport outreaches and youth camps, among others. At one recent kids camp, 33 children put their faith in Christ; at another, 35 children gave their lives to the Lord. Ministries need funding and prayers for volunteer workers to accommodate hundreds of children attending these evangelistic camps.
One local ministry’s evangelistic radio program reaches thousands of people, including many Muslims. The gospel also reaches people through home visits and open-air events.
Native missionaries also elevate living standards of families and entire communities through job skills and agricultural training. Sewing, hair-dressing and small-trading skills help raise incomes and keep families intact, and those who are benefiting also hear the good news of eternal life in Christ. One ministry saw 31 widows and 22 disabled persons put their faith in Christ as they learned job skills during one six-month span. At the same time, 32 orphans under the workers’ care also put their faith in Christ.
It is not unusual to see children wandering aimlessly on the streets, many of them with only one parent who has not been able to obtain work. Local missionaries engage these children’s families and help pay for the kids’ education, and assistance is sought for this and for the workers’ monthly needs amid widespread poverty.
Sources: Joshua Project, CIA World Factbook, Wikipedia
How to Pray for
- Pray that poor children will be able to attend school, obtain work and lift their families out of the poverty that is so widespread in the country.
- Pray that local missionaries will be supported enough to lift them out of poverty, and that they will be kept safe from disease and growing Islamic opposition.
- Pray for churches to be unified and be beacons of light amid the great darkness that surrounds them.
More stories from Ghana
Praise God that workers with a native ministry providing assistance to widows led 39 of them to put their faith in Christ. The gospel is also spreading through a literacy class where 180 adults use the New Testament as a text. “Most will encounter Jesus as they read the Gospel,” the ministry leader said.
From soccer tournaments where youths hear the gospel to seminars for merchants on how to do business with Christian principles, local missionaries have seen much fruit from multiple opportunities to proclaim Christ. Through their sports ministries, 179 young adults have received the Lord’s salvation.
A community that practiced idolatry before local missionaries led many youths to the Lord has recently seen older adults also come to faith in Christ. Seniors that used to believe church was only for young people are now attending worship services, and workers are guiding the young people to grow in their faith as they obtain jobs and start families as adults.
Kazim Safisa was once like the young Muslim men waiting for him in front of his village home in West Africa with knives, clubs and cudgels. Returning home from a long day working his farm in Ghana, the new Christian knew the cultural dynamics behind their Islamic zeal. Not long before, Safisa had been a zealous sheikh, going village to village teaching on the Koran. He knew why they felt “infidels” like him must die.