It is imperative that the church strengthens its efforts and reaches out a lot more to the youth than it has done in the past with the message of the gospel to transform them, the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council (GPCC) has said.
The Council spoke in an interview with Faithnewsgh.com on recent developments regarding the alleged murder of the 11-year old, Ishmael Mensah Abdallah, by two underaged boys at Kasoa in the Central Region.
The General Secretary, Reverend Emmanuel Teimah Garribah, who spoke on behalf of the council, is of the view that in as much as it is shocking to hear that the perpetrators of the crime are underaged boys, it only suggests that similar crimes could be ongoing elsewhere without the knowledge of the public, in the name of getting rich.
He said: “Previously, we didn’t hear of teenagers murdering for the purpose of making money. That was something that was associated with adults—people who were grown and could take decisions by themselves. For all you know, this could not have been the first time the youth have engaged in this; there might have been some incidents we might not have heard of, so it is alarming.”
“So I think as a church we must do a lot more. I have always said that but for the church and it’s efforts, the situation might have been worse,” he added.
Rev. Teimah however refutes claims about churches’ propagation and concentration on material wealth being partly responsible for the cupidity among the youth.
According to him, all churches under the GPCC and others like the “Christian Council, National Association of Christian and Charismatic Churches and other ecumenical bodies”, are properly regulated in their services and preach the truth.
“We preach the prosperity gospel, but we also preach that money is not all that there is to life. So you don’t have to make money anyhow anyway. We don’t preach such gospel. We preach hard work by which you can acquire wealth. We preach morality and righteousness by which you can still acquire wealth,” he said.
With Scriptural reference, the Clergyman added: “The blessings of the Lord makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow to it [Proverbs 10:22]. So it is the Lord who blesses the work of our hand so we can make wealth. That is what we try to impart on the youth that we should not be obsessed with making wealth anyhow, but we must work hard and the Lord Himself will bless our efforts and make us as rich as He wants us to be.”
He however urged people to be circumspect especially pertaining to the messages preached in churches because in his words, “not every church that leads itself is a church. For the Bible says ‘by their fruits you shall know them’ [Matthew 7:20].”
“If the fruit the supposed church is bearing is not biblical, that church cannot be a church. It can call itself so but it is not a church,” he added.