Christianity in Ghana is growing at a rapid pace, and as a result, Ghana is currently known worldwide as a center for the Christian faith. Coming up are some interesting facts about Ghana Christianity.
Fact No.9: In 1482, the first Catholic mission was established at Elmina by Catholic priests who had accompanied Portuguese immigrants to the Gold Coast of Ghana. A few years later, the Catholic faith was prohibited by Dutch immigrants (who were also Calvinists). The Catholic Church re-emerged in May 1880 and established their mission station at the same place in 1882. The Catholic Church, therefore, turned out to be the last of the major Christian denominations to be established in Ghana.
Fact No.8: Christian denominations in Ghana include Methodist, Anglican, Presbyterian, Catholic, Lutheran, Seventh Day Adventist, Baptist, Pentecostal, etc. The Pentecostal and Charismatic churches are however currently overshadowing the ‘mainstream’ churches, i.e., the Catholic, Anglican, Presbyterian, and Methodist churches.
Fact No.7: Ghanaians are embracing Christianity with great fervor and enthusiasm, thus shaping and influencing the national identity. It is common to see people going to all-night prayer vigils in church. Weekday and weeknight meetings are also quite popular, while billboards and posters advertising Christian meetings can be seen on the streets of major towns.
Fact No.6: The increased popularity of the Charismatic faith stems from its similarity with traditional beliefs, in which people would consult spirits when in need of help. In addition, the combination of ecstatic worship, faith in a God who performs miracles and helps people to achieve their social aspirations is a major crowd puller.
Fact No.5: Despite the apparent growth of Ghana Christianity, the church continues to be plagued by secularism, materialism and moral decadence. Many of the recently established churches focus on outward manifestation of signs and wonders at the expense of spiritual growth.
Fact No.4: The main challenges that the Church in Ghana continues to battle are poverty, ignorance, disease, and corruption, some of which are found within the church itself. The church leadership, therefore, has the task of setting an example by dealing with these issues in a Godly manner.
Fact No.3: Back in 1929, six major churches, i.e., English church Mission (Anglican), Wesleyan Methodist Church (Methodist Church of Ghana), Zion Church, African Methodist Episcopal (AME), Presbyterian Church of Ghana, and Ewe Presbyterian Church (Evangelical Presbyterian Church) joined forces to form the Christian Council of Ghana. The CCG continues to develop well structured and appropriate organizations that control and respond to problems facing member churches.
Fact No.2: Missions and churches founded most of the leading secondary schools in Ghana. In the past, most of the graduates from these schools had a good understanding of the Bible, as missionaries would regularly supply bibles to these institutions.
Fact No.1: 71% of Ghana’s population is Christian. Christianity in Ghana has a more substantial following than other religions, including Islam. Everywhere one looks, there is a church!
Ghanaians are very religious and practice their faith without inhibition. With time, Ghana Christianity will prove to be an example to other nations of what the benefits of freedom of worship are, as well as how faith can change society.