This update is long overdue. I sincerely apologize and want to thank everyone who continues to support this fund. If you have any additional questions after reading this short summary please feel free to let me know in the Contact Tab of the website.
As we have stated many times before, the goal of this fund is to support the work in Ghana by equipping native pastors and ministers with the education and financial support they need to engage in the work of the Lord. Their ability to evangelize, plant churches, teach young Christians and baptize them is much more aligned with God’s design than waiting for foreign missionaries to spend a couple weeks of the year in Ghana. Though both are needed, I think the future of the work depends much more on the former than the latter.
Furthermore, a desire of mine has been to communicate to interested people the status of the work periodically. The temptation on my part is to always and/or only communicate the glowing potential of the work and omit the real struggles. However, my desire has always been to communicate honestly what is going on in Ghana, and pray that you would continue supporting the work through the good times and bad. This prayer remains unchanged.
With that being said, 2018 and the beginning of 2019 has been difficult for many reasons.
First, it has been a almost two years since I last travelled to Ghana. For various reasons, (including medical concerns for my youngest son, I have been called to a lot of domestic revivals the past two summers, and other reasons) I have been unable to travel to Ghana. This makes managing the fund difficult. As the primary steward for this fund I like to be able to give a firsthand account about what is going on in Ghana. All of the phone calls, emails, and secondhand stories cannot replace being there. So please pray that God will provide me the means and opportunity to travel there soon.
Secondly, the work in Cape Coast (at Faith Missionary Baptist Church- where Frank de Souza was the former pastor) has been struggling. Last year at the Old Union Missions Conference Brother Danny Chandler made an impassioned plea to help raise money for the church to get a van. This would eliminate the cost of taxis to transport the people to the church each service. Within just a few weeks we had enough money to purchase a van. Yet, the charitableness of God’s people exceeded even our loftiest expectations.
A person from Sulphur Fork Missionary Baptist Church (where Brother Chandler pastors) donated a van, which only required us to pay for repairs, body work, shipping, and tariffs. With the help of Sister Jemima Sekyere, Brother Samuel Sekyere, and Brother Tony Day, the van was fixed, painted, shipped, and received by the church. Below are a few pictures of the van after being received by Faith Church.
Unfortunately, since the church received the van we learned that a member of the church misused mission funds. Fortunately, these funds did not come from the Gold Coast Mission Fund, nor was it a substantial amount of money, however it did cause significant discord in the church. As recent as this past weekend Brother Samuel Sekyere and Brother Paul Owusu travelled to Cape Coast to help the church sort out these issues. I spoke with Brother Samuel two days ago and he explained to me the situation in great detail. We both believe that the person responsible has been properly dealt with and the discord in the church has been eliminated. However, they are without a pastor and have now endured two very difficult situations in the last 5 years. Please pray for their spiritual growth and that God will raise up a man in Cape Coast or elsewhere in Ghana to pastor the church.
Thirdly, please pray and try to encourage Brother Paul Owusu. I spoke with him approximately 6 weeks ago and he has struggled the last few years maintaining his physical stamina and staying encouraged in the work of the Lord. Since many don’t know, the church he pastors, New Covenant Missionary Baptist Church, is located in Atebubu, Ghana. This small city is located in the central part of the country and is deprived of certain basic amenities which can even be found in the other parts of the country (developed according to Ghana standards). An anthropologist marked Atebubu as having the highest number of Muslims in West Africa, which makes the mission field even more difficult. Furthermore, his wonderful wife, Felicia, had a severe stroke a few years ago which has added to his work load. In our conversation I told him I would make it a point to pray for him more often, talk with him more frequently, and encourage others to reach out. When you have time, I think it would be a huge encouragement for him to hear from you through Facebook or the the Contact Tab on this website. I will make sure he receives any messages sent through the website.
Finally, I must publicly thank Brother Samuel Sekyere for all of his hard work. I cannot express the immense help he has been to me, all of the men and women who travel to Ghana each year, and in demonstrating the necessary wisdom and grace to be the informal leader of the work in Ghana. Your prayers for him, his family, and all of the responsibilities God has placed upon his shoulders would be gratefully appreciated.
May God richly bless everyone reading this blog, supporting the work in Ghana, and engaging in the work of the Lord in any capacity.
Your Brother in Christ,
Bradley S. Hicks