Kumasi, Ghana

Kumasi, Ghana Background

 

The Ashanti Region

Ghana has a tropical climate with no distinct seasons, but a change between dry- and rainy seasons. The Harmattan, a north-easterly trade wind, is responsible for the dry season, lasting from November to February. The West African Monsoon, on the other hand, brings great amounts of rain from March to October. In geographical dimensions, Ghana is almost exactly the same size as Great Britain (including Northern Ireland). But the European Country counts about 2.5 times more inhabitants than Ghana.

The majority of the approximately 25 million Ghanaians have received a good education and grow up multilingual. It is not exception for Ghanaians to speak three to five languages fluently. The official language is English, but there are almost 80 different languages and dialects. Our CfaN-West Africa-Director also comes from Ghana.

The Ashanti Region has been the home of the Akan Ashanti people since the beginning of time and is located about 200 kilometres inland from Ghana’s coast. Our Great Gospel Campaign will take place in the capital city of this region: Kumasi.

In addition to the official Ghanaian administration, this part of the country maintains parallel structures through counsels, which are headed by the Paramount Chiefs. These counsels are part of the administration and members of the Ashanti Regional House of Chiefs.

Since the late 17th century, the rulers of Kumasi (the “Kumansihene) reigned the entire Ashanti kingdom, which made them the richest kings in West Africa. To this day, the Manhyia palace is one of the most spectacular sights in Ghana.

Immense Gold Deposits

Even today, there are considerable gold occurrences in the Ashanti Region. It made active trade relations with neighbouring countries and kingdoms possible. Important trade routes met here, e.g. from Timbuktu and from what is Nigeria today, on their way to the coast.

It was known as the British Gold Coast until 1958, and supplied about one tenth of all world wide gold demand in the 16th century, most of which was mined in Kumasi. These gold deposits still make it one of the wealthiest cities in Africa today. Main exports today are cocoa and gold.

The City of Kumasi

The capital city of the Ashanti region, formerly also called Coomassie or Kumase, is with approximately two million inhabitants the second largest city in Ghana today. The conurban area, with a radius of about 30 kilometres around the city, houses approximately 2.5 million people. That is comparable to the Austrian capital Vienna.

Already in its early history, Kumasi developed into an important trade hub, thanks to its favourable location. In Kumasi you will find the largest single market in all of West Africa: Kejetia with over 10,000 market stalls and shops.

The city is located 500 kilometres north of the equator and is surrounded by jungle. Due to its colour- and plentiful flora, Kumasi is also called the “garden city” or “garden of West Africa”.

Faith and Syncretism

In the 19th century, Presbyterian and Methodist missionaries laid the foundation for evangelisation. The installation of schools played a major role in spreading the Gospel. To this day, Christian schools play an important role in the state education system.

Approximately 40 percent of the population adhere to traditional natural religions, 30 percent are Muslims. About 20 percent belong to evangelical churches (e.g. Presbyterians, Methodists, Baptists, Pentecostals and Charismatics) and 10 percent are Catholic, a large number of those living in the Ashanti region. Other sources claim a Christian population of 60 percent and only 22 percent of those adhering to natural religions.

Traditional, demonised tribal cults generally idolise a high being, which is deemed so powerful and daunting that no one dare worship it. Instead, they worship smaller, local gods and spirits as mediator between humans and the high being. Sacrifices need to be made, usually food or animals. These gods are jealous and it is deemed important to honour and worship them equally.

Ancestor worship is supposed to make contact with the spiritual world and is to guarantee provision and sustenance. Ancestors are regarded as guardians who guide people’s lives. Often, tribal chiefs will perform ritual acts, but there are also witches and shamans operating through demonic powers, casting curses etc…

As it is in many parts of West Africa, there are no distinct differentiation between the many religions. Traditional religions are mixed with Islam, sects and also Christian beliefs. Many Ghanaians will see no problem with approaching a witchdoctor or traditional healer for help, even if they belong to a different religion. This practise is called syncretism. That is why it is of utmost importance that the Gospel is preached clearly and unambiguously, with signs and wonders following.

A Remarkable Start

November 6, 2014

Dear Mission Partners,

Discarded wheelchairs and walking aidsI’ve just returned to my room after an extraordinary first night at our campaign here in Kumasi, Ghana. I can truly say that we haven’t seen anything like this in quite a while. The first miracle was the weather. When we arrived in Kumasi a couple days ago we found constant rain and the campaign ground was a swamp. The weather forecast was calling for a 90% chance of thunderstorms all week. This would have been disastrous for our open air meetings. I asked many of you to pray and we were praying ourselves that the Lord would hold back the rain.

At four o’clock this afternoon, just before It was time to head to the field, I pulled my curtains open and looked out to see the sun shining brightly and the ground dried up! Not a drop of rain fell on us tonight and the crowd started out at 115,000 people! This is only the first night. This campaign could turn out to be absolutely massive.

The people responded to the Gospel with great joy and many remarkable miracles took place. First of all, there were so many lame healed tonight, at one point I was looking for other testimonies. 

  • A woman who had a stroke and was paralysed on her right side 8 years ago, received full use of her arm and leg. She threw her crutch away!
  • Another woman who was lame for 10 years walked perfectly.
  • A man who was paralysed in both legs from the knees down, was totally healed. He was running and dancing on the platform.

Several other lame of various kinds were healed as well. There was a pile of crutches and other medical aids on the platform like a monument to the power of God. But that wasn’t all:

  • A woman with two blind eyes and a paralysed arm was also healed. She could see and she could move her arm perfectly!
  • A woman who was deaf in her right ear was also healed. She could hear so well that as she plugged left ear (the one that had been fine) with the crowd cheering. I stood nearly 20 feet away and spoke and she could repeat my words!

Other miracles happened as well – too many to mention. But Kumasi is buzzing with excitement – Jesus is alive!

There is an insatiable electricity in the air. I can tell that this campaign will be historic for Kumasi and for Ghana. Tomorrow morning the Fire Conference continues as Peter van den Berg and I continue to minister to the pastors, bishops and other church leaders. Thank you for lifting us up in prayer. Please continue to pray for fair weather and for the people of Kumasi. May they experience the living Jesus as never before.

Yours in the Gospel,

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda
Together with Reinhard Bonnke, Peter van den Berg and the whole CfaN team.

The crowd of 115,000 on day 1

The Crowd Doubles

November 7, 2014

Dear Mission Partners,

Tonight the crowd more than doubled to 240,000. Have a look at the pictures. You will notice that the field is actually two hills with a huge ravine between them. Both sides were packed with people. Peter van den Berg walked all the way to the far side of the fields and told me that he had great difficulty getting back because of the density of the crowd. These are awesome dynamics.

When we left the hotel for the campaign tonight, the rain was pouring down. I must admit, I was getting concerned. But soon we made a wonderful discovery – the campaign field was completely dry. We were praising the Lord.

I preached about the blood of Jesus tonight. Many thousands responded to the Gospel and then we broke the curses and burned fetishes, amulets, idols & charms given to the people by witch doctors. Then I prayed for the sick and so many miracles happened:

young boy talks for the first time in his lifeWe heard the testimony of a man who has been paralysed for the last 3 years because of a stroke and was healed. He was carried to the meeting last night, but when it was time to leave no one could find him. After the prayer for the sick, he had gotten up and walked five miles to his house. When his wife arrived home, she found him in bed already!

A young woman who was blind in her right eye for 12 years was healed along with a seven-year-old boy who was born deaf and dumb. It was so precious to hear him say “Mama” for the first time in his life tonight.

A man who could not walk without a stick was healed. After the prayer for the sick, he started running, not walking. Also a woman who was paralysed on the left side for 10 years received full use of her left arm and leg tonight. Her daughter came with her to testify. She said that for the last 10 years, she has been bathing and dressing her mother because she was unable to do it herself. But tonight she was healed. They embraced and beamed with joy on the platform. Praise the Lord!

Tomorrow is the final day of Fire Conference. Many top pastors and leaders of the Church in Ghana are attending. We will pray for them to receive the fire of the Holy Spirit. When these pastors are touched, they have the potential to touch thousands of others. Please continue to pray for us.

Yours in the Gospel,

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda
Together with Reinhard Bonnke, Peter van den Berg and the whole CfaN team

crowd doubled to 240,000

Preaching in the Rain

November 8, 2014

Dear Mission Partners,

Tonight the crowd grew to over 300,000 people…and not for lack of rain. As the worship was going on it started to pour. I thought the people might run for cover, but instead they lifted their voices and began to pray. After a few seconds, the rain suddenly stopped and the people began to rejoice and praise the Lord. After I started preaching, once again it started to pour. I told the people, “If you will stand in the rain, I will stand here with you.” No one moved. The rain did not distract from the message one bit. Thousands upon thousands as far as the eye could see responded to the altar call. Praise the Lord.

Tonight I also prayed for the people to receive the baptism into the Holy Spirit as we did this morning in the Fire Conference. In the morning Peter van den Berg preached the final message and by the time I got up to pray the people were ready. There was such a powerful outpouring of the spirit in both morning and evening meetings.

Tonight we also heard many wonderful testimonies:

  • A little paralysed girl was healed
  • An old man, completely deaf in both ears was perfectly healed
  • An old woman, totally blind in both eyes could see
  • Lots of lame were healed and much more

It’s hard to believe that tomorrow is the final meeting of the final campaign of 2014. We are pushing for one more massive harvest. Please lift us up in prayer as we cross the finish line here in Kumasi, Ghana.

Yours in the Gospel,    

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda
Together with Reinhard Bonnke, Peter van den Berg and the whole CfaN team

Pictures by O. Volyk

Over One Million - Over One Week

November 9, 2014

Crowds dowsed with waterDear Missions Partners,

Despite the fact that tonight we concluded the 406th Gospel Campaign I saw a couple things tonight that I’ve never seen before. First of all, the crowd was so dense that there was enormous heat coming off the crowd – so much so that people began to faint. This is not new however; we’ve seen this before. What was new was the solution the local authorities had for the problem. They brought in fire engines and began to douse the crowd with water cannons to cool them off! All throughout my preaching 50-60 foot tall jets of water moved around the crowd spraying the people (quite ironic considering we have been praying all week that it wouldn’t rain). There’s never a dull moment.

Because of the incredible density of the crowd, especially near the platform, we were unable to bring people forward to give their testimonies of healing. Still, when I asked for a show of hands from those who had experienced a miracle, it was thousands. But the greatest miracle of all was the multitudes that were born again tonight, making a life changing decision to follow Jesus.

This afternoon, Peter van den Berg and I were invited to visit with the King of the Ashante Kingdom (which was the largest African Kingdom in history, spanning over several countries at one point). The King told me he had heard reports of what was happening at the campaign and asked if I would pray for him. I had a chance to pray with him, his top deputies and his 104-year-old mother.

The pastors sitting on the platform were the top bishops and apostles of the region. They are distinguished men and women – highly educated and greatly respected throughout Ghana. They told me that they have never seen an event like this before. They also commented over and over that they were very blessed by the messages and the purity of the Gospel that was preached. This is what we set out to accomplish. We don’t just want to have a few miracles and big crowds; we are here to preach the clear Gospel in the power of the Holy Spirit.

All in all we saw 1,060,000 attend this week’s Gospel Campaign. The city has been absolutely rocked and I’m sure that generations to come will be impacted by what Jesus has done here this week.

Being the last campaign of the year, on behalf of the whole CfaN family, I want to wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a happy holiday season. May your home be filled with the wonder of God’s love expressed in the ultimate gift, the birth of Jesus Christ.

Yours in the Gospel,

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda
Together with Reinhard Bonnke, Peter van den Berg and the whole CfaN team

crowd at kumasi gospel campaign

Pictures by O. Volyk

We are rejoicing with Heaven!

Dear Mission Partners,

I’ve just received the report from Kumasi that 583,480 decision cards were registered during the campaign! We are rejoicing with Heaven over the many lives that were changed for eternity. Thank you for standing with us in this ongoing harvest of souls.

This being our last Gospel Campaign of the year, let me take this opportunity to wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. 

Yours in the Gospel,

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda
Together with Reinhard Bonnke, Peter van den Berg and the whole CfaN team

Gallery

Click/Touch an image below to see a slideshow of the Campaign images