We can’t preach for free — ‘Evangelists’

They are usually found at strategic locations such as markets, transport yards, hospitals and on buses plying their trade.

Whether called or motivated, these men and women, who prefer to be called evangelists, go about their business with loud microphones and sometimes blaring speakers to make their presence felt.

And the unique antics displayed by some of them to draw attention creates the impression that they are entertainers rather than preachers.  

Contrary to this perception, some of them who spoke to The Mirror said they preached the word of God not because of money but solely to win souls for Christ. 

However, some who encounter these preachers believe that they are just doing it mainly for the donations that they receive from  members of the public. 

In an interview with The Mirror, Evangelist Ernest Acheampong, who operates at the Achimota New Station market and the 37 Station in Accra, said he had been directed by God to preach the word to the public. 

Mr Acheampong, who described himself as a former “shoe king” of Tema, explained that some individuals had been donating to his ministry. 

He said the money realised was used in hiring equipment and transport for the work of God. 

He explained that such donations were essential for the survival of the ministry.

He listed some of the equipment he uses as microphones, speakers, a generator and others which he rents for his work.

In view of that, Mr Acheampong was quick to add that  “there is no way we can preach for free.”

He said the cost involved in running the ministry had increased because of the erratic power supply and so the money collected also paid for a generator and the cost of fuelling it. 

“Though a lot of people think we are preaching for the money, it is also impossible to exclude it as part of the ministry’s demand,” Kwame Nkrumah Circle based Evangelist S.K Boafo also pointed out. 

Mr Boafo, who has been in the evangelism ministry for 19 years, said he had been able to win a lot of souls for God but a number of individuals on the contrary think he is in the field  for the money or as a result of unemployment. 

He, however, said “there are some evangelists in town who are in the ministry because they have no jobs and have to create a source of livelihood but such notion should not be linked to all.” 

Mr Boafo is of the belief that his work as an evangelist will be incomplete without voluntary financial donations from the public.

Another evangelist based at the Tema Station in Accra, Mr Fred Kojo Agyapong, also said sometimes the offerings they received wasn’t enough to grow the ministry.

According to Mr Boafo who is also the head pastor of the Kingdom of God Ministry at La in Accra,“one cannot complain because it is a gift and you can’t force people to give.” 

However, Mr Agyapong, a former mason, noted that though things seemed tough under the current economic conditions, little or no offering won’t stop him from preaching the word because people needed to hear the message of salvation. 

While some pedestrians The Mirror spoke to expressed their unwillingness to donate to these preachers, some traders at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle admitted to supporting the work of the evangelists with monetary contribution

Esi Attah, one of the traders, said: “Sometimes when they preach, it touches my heart and I put some money in their box to support their work.”  

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