The Word of God Must be Engraved in Ghanaians’ Lives, Bishops at Plenary Assembly

Archbishop Philip Naameh, President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference with Archbishop Henryk Mieczysław Jagodziński, Apostolic Nuncio in Ghana and Bishop Gabriel Edoe Kumordji, SVD, Bishop of the Keta-Akatsi Diocese at the opening of the 2020 Plenary of the GCBC at the St. Catherine Girls Senior High School at Agbakope on November 9, 2020.
Credit: Damian Avevor

The Catholic Bishops in Ghana have underscored the need for the Word of God to influence “every aspect” of the people of God in the West African nation in view of becoming “the star of Africa and a beacon of hope.”

Speaking during the opening of the Plenary Assembly of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference (GCBC) Monday, November 9, Archbishop Philip Naameh who is at the helm of the Conference said that the Word of God is the only source of hope amid life’s challenges.

“As a nation, the word of God should therefore permeate every aspect of our lives, every sector and this must be true in its very sense. We shall harvest the blessings of God in a more profound way if we walk the path of God’s word and bear fruits by our lifestyles,” GCBC President said November 9 when he officially opened the ongoing Plenary in Ghana’s Keta-Akatsi Diocese.

The 10-day Plenary Assembly of GCBC members is taking place under the theme, “The Word of God: Christian Formation for Transformation in Ghana.”

Addressing the gathering at the St. Catherine Girls Senior High School, Archbishop Naameh added, “Our country will become the star of Africa and a beacon of Hope for the entire world if we embrace the Word of God wholeheartedly, and use it as our canon and measuring rod for the right way of living.”

In such a challenging moment when the whole world is looking for a solution to the COVID-19 pandemic and its devastating effects, the Ghanaian Archbishop said, the Word of God becomes the only source of hope.

He went on to urge the people of God in Ghana to also embrace the Word of God, which would see them have peaceful elections slated to take place next month.

“God’s word is indeed alive and active. It has the power to transform us and our country. Let us give God the chance by way of prominence to His word. Let us listen for the still small voice of God to speak to us even as we prepare for the general elections on December 7,” he advised.

He added, “the Word of God must be a source of unity for all those who take inspiration from it and so are directed by the Word.”

Archbishop Naameh who is the Local Ordinary of Ghana’s Tamale Archdiocese called on all Christians to come together and wipe out what he termed as the evil of division, which “is gradually eating into the Christian fold and tearing the country apart.”

Touching on the need to properly form the conscience of Christians, the 72-year-old Prelate said, “The proper and sustained formation of the consciences of Christians will help us, as a nation, to reduce and eventually eliminate the corruption that has become so endemic in all sectors of our national life.”

The President of GCBC said that since the vast majority of the people of God in Ghana claim to be Christians, (referring to about 70 percent of Ghanaians), all leaders must join in initiating and sustaining a systematic formation of the moral conscience of people.

“We call on Christian parents who are the first teachers of their children to seek to form their own consciences properly and help form the consciences of their children,” he said, and added, “Let them learn to look upon life in the light of eternity and continually strive to make a well-formed conscience.”

Archbishop Naameh continued to appeal, reaching out to the young people in Ghana, “Let us be reminded that the future of this country depends to a large extent on the youth. Let all and sundry become protagonists in the effort to help them form their consciences properly.”

Meanwhile, in his message for the members of GCBC, the representative of the Holy Father in Ghana described the theme of the Plenary Assembly as apt as it brings to the fore a reflection of the apostolic Letter Aperuit Illis instituting Sunday of the Word of God on September 30, 2019.

“I appreciate the aptness of the theme chosen by the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference for this Plenary Assembly, focusing on the Word of God which is indeed the goal of Pope Francis,” Archbishop Henryk Mieczysław Jagodziński, making reference to the Plenary theme, “The Word of God: Christian Formation for Transformation in Ghana.”

Asserting that the Word of God is a salvation story, which cannot be ignored by Christians, the Polish-born Prelate who was appointed the Apostolic Nuncio in Ghana in May called on Catholics in the West African nation to endeavor to abreast themselves with the Word of God which gives life to humanity.

The 10-day 2020 Plenary Assembly of GCBC members that started November 3 with a Retreat is expected to end on November 13 with a collective statement highlighting issues of national interest.

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