St Theresa of the Child Jesus Society marks 25th anniversary
The Metropolitan Archbishop of Accra of the Roman Catholic Church, Most Rev. John Bonaventure Kwofie, last Saturday performed the rites to dedicate the newly-built St. Theresa of the Child Jesus Catholic Church building at Gbetile.
The ceremony climaxed the 25th anniversary celebration of the St. Theresa of the Child Jesus Society of the Catholic Archdiocese of Accra.
The celebration brought together over 1,000 members of the society from 91 branches in all the parishes in the Archdiocese.
Some of the branches were Star of the Sea (Dansoman), St. Peters (Tema New Town), St. John of God (Amrahia), Sacred Heart (Derby Avenue), St Catherine (Burma Camp), St. Charles Borromeo (Oyibi), Holy Trinity (Sarpeiman), St Joseph the Worker (Tema Community 8), St. Michael (Nsakinaa), St. Ann & Joachim (Teshie), St. Barnabas (Haatso), St. Dominic Savio (Afienya), St. Paul (Kpehe) and St. Cecelia (Frafraha).
Others were Prince of Peace (Kwashieman), Mary Seat of Wisdom (Oyarifa), St. Anthony (Nungua), Holy Family (Mataheko), St. Augustine (Ashaiman), Queen of Peace (Madina), St. Stephen (Darkuman), Christ the King (Cantonments), Martyrs of Uganada (Mamprobi), Mary Mother of Good Counsel (Airport West), St. John the Baptist (Odorkor), St. John Bosco (Tema), St. Patrick (Domi), St Francis Xavier (Kotobabi), St George (Police Depot) and St. Patrick (Gbetsile).
Rites of dedication
The rites for the dedication of the building, which started in 2011, was considered to be among the most solemn of Catholic liturgical services.
It began from the entrance to the auditorium where representatives of those involved in building the church handed it over to the Bishop.
This was followed by liturgy of the word, prayer of dedication and anointing of the church, as well as the rites of anointing, incensing, covering and lighting of the altar.
Goodness of God
Speaking at the event, Most Rev. Kwofie acknowledged the goodness of God for working through people to build such a huge and beautiful edifice.
“Today, we lift up our hands and voices towards heaven and tell God that there is no God like him in heaven or on earth for His goodness endures forever,” he said.
“Brothers and sisters, the dedication of the church sets the church apart for the things of God. You have met the place where you will hear God speak to us and we also speak to God."
He expressed gratitude to some individuals, other prominent members of the church and the entire Gbetsile congregation who worked tirelessly to realise the vision.
“Today, we are acknowledging the goodness of God.
God has been good to us and has worked through people such as Archbishop Palmer Buckle who gave money to buy the land. Dame Gloria Kwasie and her late husband, who got the permission to start the society in Accra which is 25 years today,” he said.
He also thanked Mr Seth Agyemang, who contributed and offered his block making machine, late Paul Fianoo who supervised the project when it started, as well as the Chief of Gbetsile, Christian Adjeda, and the project committee for their hard work.
“Thankful to Father Sena Korkordzi and Father Melvin Mensah, who were Parish Priests here and current Parish Priest, Father Isaac Donkor, Spiritual Director and Chaplain of the St. Theresa of the Child Jesus Society Archdiocese of Accra, Rev. Father Emmanuel Gosu and the entire church of Gbetsile for your yearly contributions, harvest and thanksgiving you contributed to making the project a reality,” he said.
“To members of St. Theresa of the Child Jesus Catholic Church, Gbetsile today your society leaders have made a long journey to reach here because of love of Gbetsile. Please keep this beautiful house of God as clean and holy always. Make it a welcoming community and a home of peace for all generations,” he cautioned.
Spiritual Director and Chaplain of the St. Theresa of the Child Jesus Society Archdiocese of Accra, Rev. Father Emmanuel Gosu, mentioned that the building had been one of the success stories of the members of the society in the archdiocese, some individuals in the church, patrons and patronesses.
“The Archbishop of Accra led us in the dedication of the chapel so that officially it will be used for worship and preaching of the word of God.
The gathering is a joyous one as you can see everybody is happy and we thank God that he has made it possible.”
For her part, Founder of the Society in the Accra Archdiocese, Dame Obaapanyin Gloria Peggy Kwasie, expressed appreciation to God and all church members who contributed in diverse ways to complete the building.
“Today, we climax our 25th anniversary and somewhere along the line, the Archbishop at that time, Most Rev. Palmer Buckle, gave us a task to build this edifice. Although it was tough, by the grace of God we have been able to accomplish the mission and we give glory to God,” she said.