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Dr. Ed Travels back to Accra, Ghana Africa

Theophostic Prayer Ministry in Accra, Ghana, Africa

Note: Be sure and watch the "Road Trip" video below.

Dr. Ed M. Smith (founder of TPM) took the TPM Basic Training Seminar to Accra the capitol city of Ghana, Africa in November of 2006. TPM had already established firm roots in Ghana before this trip due to the efforts of Dr. Samuel Oheneba Dornyo and Rev. Moses More and others who had facilitated the combined training of over 1000 people over the last few years. Dr. Smith had asked that this particular training event be focused primarily upon church leaders and Christian mental health professionals. He was seeking to establish a relationship with those who would be training others in the months and years to come. Following the Basic Training Seminar Dr. Smith stayed an extra day to meet with the core leadership answering questions, building relationships and refining their skills in this ministry approach. Overall the trip was very fruitful and has promise of a great work to come to this part of Africa. Based upon what transpired during the five days Dr. Smith was there, Theophostic Prayer Ministry will surely become a major tool God can use in bringing emotional freedom to tens of thousands of Africans in the years to come.

TPM is being used in many different parts of Africa besides Ghana to include; Nigeria, Mali, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Tanzania, and more. The people of Ghana believe that the Lord is calling them to take TPM not to just their country but to all of Africa. Pray that His will is accomplished.

A history making event occurred while Ed Smith was in Ghana.

The Ghana Academy o fChristian Counselors (GACC) was officially registered as the 50th professional body in Ghana in October 2005. The inaguration of this institution came about while Dr. Ed Smith was in Ghana. He was asked to be the keynote speaker ushering the academy into place. Now in order to legally practice faith-based counseling in Ghana you must receive licensure or credentials from GACC. This association embodies professional Christian Counselors in Ghana and is expected to be the supervising body that credentials and runs continuing education for everyone who practices faith-based counseling in Ghana.

The GACC operates under the umbrella of the International Theological Seminary of Ghana (ITS). The ITS was established by Dr. Samuel Oheneba Dornyo who had a vision to train quality theologians and Christian Counselors for the work of ministry. ITS is at the forefront of evangelical scholarship in Ghana and serves as a ministry arm of the body of Christ. ITS reaches not just the people of Ghana but stretches to neighboring countries such as Togo, Benin and Burkina Faso. The seminary runs courses in Theology, Divinity, Biblical Studies, and Clinical Christian Counseling from Certificate to Master Levels.

The International Theological Seminary (ITS) of Ghana was behind this ground-breaking event. ITS is the primary training institution for faith-based counselors and oversees the Academy. Theophostic Prayer Ministry will play an important part in this exciting development in that ITS has made the TPM Basic Seminar a part of its required core curriculum. All students completeing class in this seminary will be required as part of their overall training to complete the Theophostic Basic Training Seminar. The vision of ITS is to take TPM to all the continent of Africa. Play Video

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Ghana TPM Conference Report

Written by conference coordinator, Rev. Moses More

After almost three years the Ghana live Theophostic Prayer Ministry Basic Seminar came about during the last week of November this past year (2006). Theophostic was relatively a new subject in the country, and even then those who have been exposed to TPM were largely, mostly apologetic about it (due to the cultural taboos concerning emotional pain and need in people's lives in Ghana.) Talking about such was not an open subject. The conference was therefore a bold and fearless effort by the dedicated team of ministers who planned and coordinated the effort, backed by the gallant stature of the highlyrespected personality of Rev. Dr. Dornyo, professor and president of International Theological Seminary to bring the subject of emotional healing from the discussion tables to the doorstep of the ordinary man, unveiling the menace of emotional duress and it's horrifying traumas.It has become very apparent that almost everybody was suffering some degree of emotional wounds. In order for people to go about their normal duties and relationships, most people have to apply strong will power to be able to hide the deep pains and emotional duress that cripples them periodically. It was also very clear that we were a society of emotionally dysfunctional people filled with frustration and phobias.

The History of TPM in Ghana

Theophostic Prayer Ministry found its way into Ghana from two fronts. (1) First through the efforts of Rev. Dr. Dornyo of the International Theological Seminary. (2) By the Moses Missions Worldwide Ministry under my leadership (Rev. Moses More) and that of Bishop Bill Hoerr of Dayton-Ohio who visited Ghana annually to facilitate the public Theophostic Basic Seminars which was held at different locations, thus bringing TPM to the doorstep of pastors, church leaders, elders, deacons, deaconesses etc. making Theophostic a household name within the Ghanaian Christian community. All the people on the planning committee were greatly blessed to host Rev. Dr. Smith in his maiden visit to Africa. He was accompanied by Mr. Frank Meadows. As usual, my spiritual father and mentor, our annual chief TPM facilitator, Bishop Bill Hoerr of Dayton -Ohio was present to lend his support and blessing to the conference, which in actual fact was birthed through his untiring efforts.

The Need and Reason for the Training

This conference was very necessary because, the rate of emotional woundedness exhibited among both clergy and laity across the length and breadth of the country was too much to be left unattended to. The conference commenced on Monday 27th November 2006 at 9am. Great was the excitement and enthusiasm of the many leaders who have had prior exposure and training, that people started arriving as early as 7:30am. The opening day was started with anextendedprayer and worship session. Since I was the prime convener and Planning Committee chairman I was asked to officially welcome the participants and oriented them to the purpose of gathering. I then gratefully invited Rev. Dr. Dornyo the President of ITS, who was the honorable consultant to the planning committee to share his words of encouragement and welcome to the assembly.It was through his wisdom, support and encouragement that gave the planning board the strength and impetus to make the conference a success. After Rev. Dr. Dornyo gave a short address, he introduced our other special guests from the USA. After the introductions, he invited our key speaker, Rev. Dr. Smith to start his maiden African Theophostic Prayer Ministry basic training seminar. Dr. Smith was welcomed with a standing ovation.

For the three days, Dr. Smith was given full room to take about 300 pastors, church leaders, counselors, social workers, Medical Doctors etc. through the key principles of the Theophostic Prayer Ministry. So great was the response and interest that the participants sat very attentively and received his instructions. The participants were a representation of almost all major Christian denominations in Ghana. Each day, opportunities were given to the participants to ask questions which Dr. Smith answered satisfactorily. Most of the participants were particularly thrilled and felt very privileged to receive such in-depth trainingfrom the founder of the TPM himself. Yes, it was a great honor and blessing to Ghana and Africa as a whole.

The last and fourth day was devoted to those whodesired to go deeper in their understanding of the TPM principle.They were privileged to spend nearly a day of exclusive meeting behind close doors with Dr. Smith for further clarifications and understanding.

The Ghana conference has been like a torch set ablaze for the whole of Africa. The participants returned to their respective places ready to put to use the skills that were imparted to them, this will result in more people finding peace in their lives. This training conference has enabled TPM to come out right to the doorstep of the local church.

Another advantage of the conference was that it has emboldened those already using TPM to freely go about their practice without being apologetic. It is our expectation that from Ghana TPM will spread out to all parts of Africa.

We give praises to God that he sent to us his servant to come all the way to train and urge us on to bring emotional healing to the millions of God's people who are silently suffering without any certain cure.

Last but not the least, we are very grateful to all the brothers and sisters who cheerfully gave donations that helped us to organize the conference and to make it a great success. It is our prayer that God will greatly bless you all.

May God richly bless Dr. Smith and his entire team for all their support to us in Africa.

Rev. Moses More and ministry team of Ghana

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Ed Smiths personal reflections on TPM in Ghana

"The people of Ghana received me and this ministry with open arms. I have never felt more appreciated and blessed by any group of people before. I was treated with high respect and honor which was very humbling for me. The presence of the love of Christ was very evident. I was surprised by the overwhelming desire of thesepeople to serve and make my stay as pleasant as possible. Though Ghana as a country is not a very wealthy and poverty is evident, the believers that I met were "spiritually rich" and "overflowing with gratitude." I was very blessed to have had the privilege to become friends with so many in so short a time.
(Picture above left: Dr. Ed with new friend Pastor Chris.)

I was surprised how well the people attending the seminar were able to understand my American dialect since I struggled the entire time trying to understand their distinct African flavor. Nevertheless, the intimate communion and kindred spirit overcame all barriers of language and culture. I felt very close to those who attended. They seemed to grasp the concepts quickly and asked questions that reflected their comprehension of the principles.

Picture above is core group of TPM leaders with Dr. Ed.

On the second day of the training we started by attending the inaugurationof the Ghana Academy of Christian Counselors (GACC) that took place in another part of the city. This new official organization will be the credentialing body over all faith-based counselors in Ghana. From what I understand there is no other governing body doing this so GACC will basically oversee all counseling going on in the country. I was greatly honored when asked to be the keynote speaker at this occasion. Many of the country's political dignitaries were present and spoke as well. Ghana's population is 60% Christian and all the dignitaries that spoke where professing believers in Christ. This was a strange experience for me to witness so many political and military dignitaries boldly proclaiming Christ at a public meeting. I knew that I was not in America. Each gave a glowing testimony of the power of Christ and pledged their support to this new organization. The inauguration was well attended by mental health professionals, pastors and political leaders of Ghana. As the credentialing body for all faith-based counselors, GACC has made TPM an integral part of the credentialing process by requiring people seeking credentialing to be trained in TPM.

 

Road Trip to Ghana's Gold Coast (One of the early locations of slave trade.)

While in Ghana I had the opportunity to take a road trip and travel west to the Gold Coast with some of my new friends (watch video below.) I wanted to visit the Elmina Castle. Elmina was "built in 1482 by Portuguese traders. Elmina Castle was the first European slave-trading post in all of sub-saharan Africa. Located on the western coast of present-day Ghana, it was originally built to protect the gold trade but following its capture by the Dutch in 1637, it came to serve the Dutch slave trade. Elmina, like other West African slave fortresses, housed luxury suites for the Europeans in the upper levels while the lower floors housed the slaves in filthy dungeons... The floor of the dungeon, as result of centuries of impacted filth and human excrement, is now several inches higher than it was when it was built."[1] "Some 10 million Africans were sold into slavery between the 1500s and 1800s. The Elmina castle was one of many places where people were detained waiting for the slave ships to pick them up and take them to America or other places where they would be sold. Thousands of captives passed through the dungeons of Elmina Castle, and were shipped off, like commodities into the Americas and Caribbean against their wishes. This illicit human trade carried on for close to 300 years. These African people were subjected to all sorts of indignities, intimidation and torture. They were shackled in the damp and dark dungeons. It is said that up to three hundred captives were packed into each dungeon, without room to even lift an arm or move around. Food was scarce and disease was rampant. The unsanitary conditions under which the captives lived were unbelievable. Without room to breathe properly in those dungeons, the captives had to defecate there. The sick were often not attended to, and many of them died while held captives there. Air quality wasn't a priority. The stench in those dungeons must have been nauseating. Even today, the dungeons still reek." [2]

I felt a strange realization as I walked through the castle and listened to the tour guide describe the horrible tales of the days when people were held captive against their wills. The symbolic relation between these people and the bondages we encounter when doing ministry were strong. This is not to suggest that lie-based pain can be compared to what these people suffered in reality and truth, for it cannot. However, in the same way that the heart of God was broken over these injustices, His heart aches for each of us to know the freedom He has for us as we chooseto look to Him for freedom. Female Slave dungeon

I can still recall the pungent smell and thick, stale and musty air in the dark dungeons that used to hold hundreds of frightened and suffering people. Even now remembering the stench causes me to shiver. I was deeply saddened as I walked along during that tour realizing what depraved men and women did to those helpless souls. At one point in the tour we entered into a large room on an upper floor. It was the place of worship where the local "Christians" met for Sunday gatherings. The stark reality was these people worshiped and prayed while in the holding chamber below female slaves were suffering and dying. My heart was sickened by this reality.

One of the last places the tour took us was down a narrow dark dungeon hallway leading out of the female holding area. This pathway led to an opening on the outside wall facing the sea called the "Door of No Return". As I looked out through the doorway I realized that it was here that families were separated and people had their last look at their home country before being boarded onto the trade ships. Here again my heart ached as I tried to imagine the agony of what it must have felt to have been one of the people walking out that doorway. Bondage is an evil that is repulsive to God. Freedom is God's desire for each of us. "It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery" (Gal. 5:1). (Picture to left is looking out the Door of No Return looking to the Ocean.)

Click Here for a Photo Journal




The "Road Trip" through Ghana.
Dr. Ed took one day in his trip to sight see the country.  Click here to watch the video.

 

About the Country of Ghana

  • General Information about the Country of Ghana
    Population: 22,409,572
    Capitol city: Accra, 2,825,800
    Languages: English (official), African languages (including Akan, Moshi-Dagomba, Ewe, and Ga)
    Race: Black African 98.5%/ European and other 1.5% (1998)
    Religion: Christian 63%, indigenous beliefs 21%, Islam 16%


Footnotes [1] http://www.pbs.org/wonders/Episodes/Epi3/elmina.htm [2]http://www.blackhistorysociety.ca/Elmina.htm
 
 


 
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