Our last full day in Accra (Sunday, Jan. 8th) began with a visit to The Lighthouse Chapel International, Quodesh. It is considered the headquarters for The Lighthouse Chapel International’s worldwide operations. We participated in their “Impact Service” and afterward, were invited into the presiding bishop’s office to meet, greet, and of course, give them our contact information… The service itself was full of impressive music, joyful dancing, and a potentially powerful message of fulfillment and prosperity through Jesus. Even so, the prosperity preaching, and three offerings throughout the service left us with a great deal to talk about, and much reflection to do on the evolution of Christianity within the country. We enjoyed the hazy afternoon sun at a beach just outside of the city, taking in the ocean with some locals.
Early Monday morning we loaded our bus and departed Accra. It took us about 12 hours in total to cover the 618 Kilometers (about 384 miles) to Tamale, the largest city in the Northern Territories of Ghana. After passing through Kumasi (our next destination as we journey back towards the coast) the landscape began to change dramatically. The thick green forest gave way to a wide open savannah. Shea and cashew trees dotting the plains along the road led our way to the heart of the Ghanian north.
Today began with a short lecture and Q&A with Samuel Ntewusu, a lecturer at the University of Ghana, Accra who has met up with us for our short time based in Tamale. After our discussion we travelled north to the town of Paga, just a few miles from the northern border with Burkina Faso. Normally our visit would have begun by asking the Chief for permission to enter the village, but upon our arrival we were informed that he is still in Accra for the formalities of the presidential inauguration. While we weren’t able to have an audience with the Chief, we were still permitted to visit the Pikworo Slave Camp, our foremost intention for the days trip. Pikworo served as a slave collection outpost by Ghanaian traders, from 1704 to 1845, before they were marched south towards Kumasi and the coastal cities. The sun beat heavily against the stone and sand, as we were led through a surprisingly small encampment said to have held around 200 humans at a time. Perspective on both our privilege, and the slave’s reality broadened as we climbed, silent and sweaty, on to our air-conditioned bus.
Plenty of learning and growing left to do.
Will share again soon,