President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has given the strongest assurance yet that with the support of Ghanaians, especially the religious community, and the grace of God, the government will bring into fruition all the programmes which were once described as overly ambitious and not feasible
Speaking at a church service to climax the 125th anniversary of the Catholic Archdiocese of Accra at the Black Star Square in Accra yesterday, the President added: “And through Christ who strengthens us, the National Cathedral will be built to the glory and honour of God, Amen.”
The service was on the theme: “Celebrating 125 Years of Catholic Mission in Accra: Renewing our Commitment to Evangelisation”.
Accompanied by his wife, Rebecca, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and other members of his entourage who graced the occasion were treated to a very popular Gospel song: “Oye”, believed to be one of the favourite Gospel songs of the President.
The mood at the church service was one of joy and spirituality, as the members of the Catholic Church who thronged the Black Star Square sang melodious Catholic hymns and popular Gospel songs and danced to the glory of God.
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There was a line-up of priests from the Accra Diocese of the Catholic Church, led by the Archbishop of Cape Coast and Apostolic Administrator of Accra, the Most Rev. Charles Palmer-Buckle.
The entire place was filled to capacity, to the extent that many people who could not find seats had to stand at the periphery of the square during the church service.
In his address, President Akufo-Addo explained that it was his administration’s sacred duty to God and man to help build a society founded on the values of equity and fairness and an economy that would lead to progress and prosperity and lift the people out of poverty.
“We can only do so through hard work, animated by a sense of enterprise, creativity and innovation and with a determination to fight corruption in our public life. That is the path that will lead us to the national transformation we desire,” the President said.
He said that was the path his administration had been pursuing over the last 22 months and gave an assurance that he would abide by the solemn oath he took on
The President expressed his gratitude to the Catholic Archdiocese of Accra and the Catholic Church of Ghana for the many years of service and dedication to national development.
He said the church survived the yellow fever epidemic of the late 19th century that killed some of its first missionaries, rebuilt its structures after the earthquake of 1939 and had grown to become one of the most important institutions in Ghana.
He saluted the Catholic Church for being the only institution outside of the government that had built so many healthcare facilities, adding: “We treasure very much this partnership between state and church and I pray for God’s continuing blessings on this church.”
Making reference to Hebrews 6:10 in the Bible, the President said: “God is not unjust; He will not forget your work and the love you have shown Him, as you have helped His people and continue to help them.”
He stated that he was at the Black Star Square to inform the Catholic Archdiocese of Accra that God would not forget its works and would reward the archdiocese accordingly.
He described Archbishop Gabriel Charles Palmer-Buckle, the former Metropolitan Archbishop of Accra, as “a remarkable man” who had given contemporary meaning to the concept of a true Catholic: prudent, courageous and passionate about the pursuit of justice.
“It is worth noting that his time in office as the Metropolitan Archbishop of Accra was a most refreshing one. There was certainly not one boring moment, as he rendered service to the church, to Ghana and to mankind,” he said.
Preaching the sermon, the Most Rev. Palmer-Buckle asked the Catholic faithful to commit themselves to self-sacrifice, love and service.
He particularly urged Christians
“We belong to the Kingship of Christ Jesus, the Kingdom in which he shares with His servants and a kingship of selfless service with one another. Let us all wait for the Second Coming of this Kingdom with love,” he added.