History of Methodist Church Ghana

History of Methodist Church Ghana


The Methodist Church Ghana is celebrating 60 years of autonomy from the Methodist Church of Great Britain. The celebration is taking place throughout the country.

The Methodist Church Ghana had been under the Methodist Church of Great Britain since January 1, 1835. After serving as a district in the British Methodist Conference, the Methodist Church Ghana attained full independence from that British body on 28 July 1961. Activities have been going on for about a year now.
The History of the Methodist Church Ghana dates back to 1st January, 1835 when the first Bristish Missionary Rev. Joseph Rhodes Dunwell arrived on the shores of Cape Coast Oguaa in response to the request of some 13 indigenous Ghanaians who were yearning to have deeper knowledge of the BIBLE. 
Captain Potter, a sea Captain of "The Congo", a vessel which plied between Bristol and West Africa, transported the missionary together with the bibles to the 13 indigenous Ghanaians and Methodism started in earnest .
Unfortunately, Rev. Dunwell died only 6 months after his arrival in Cape Coast. Rev. and Mrs.Wriggley came to continue the work but died after 5 months. 

For the Church to thrive, Rev.and Mrs.Peter Harrot came but again they died after few months. Then Rev .Thomas Birch Freeman came after these five(5) missionaries, and since he had some immunity against the malaria parasite survived for a longer time to continue with the Ghanaian zealous Christian for the growth of the Church.
The remarkable growth of Methodism in spite of the short terms of service of the European missionaries and their general ignorance of the Fantse language is attributed to the effort of the indigenous people, such as Joseph Smith, William de Graft and Elizabeth Williams(Maame Akroma). They have to be remembered and honoured. "If it had been something alien to the Fantse soul, introduced by foreigners and built up by their labours, sickness and death so constantly depleting the ranks of the missionaries would have ended it long since." Arthur E. Southon. 
Ghana Methodism gained autonomy on 28th July, 1961 after one hundred and twenty six years in existence under the British Conference of the Methodist Church. 

The British Conference meeting in Liverpool unanimously consented to setting up a new Methodist Conference in Ghana. Subsequently the Methodist Church Ghana was divided into 5 Districts, namely; Cape Coast, Accra, Sekondi, Kumasi and Winneba.

Cape Coast District comprised of Abaasa, Abura, Ajumako, Anomabo, Assin, Cape Coast, Elmina and Saltpond circuits.
The foundation conference was held at the Wesley Chapel(now Cathedral), Cape Coast from 28th July- 2nd August,1961.

The Deed of foundation for the Ghana Conference was signed by: One Hundred and forty -one(141) people including the following:
 Rev Maldwy L. Edward - President of the conference of the Methodist Church
 Rev. Marjore W. Lonsdale- Vice President of Conference of the Methodist Church
 Rev. G. Thackray Eddy- the last white Chairman of the Gold Coast Synod
 Rev. Francis Chapman F. Grant- the first President of Conference.
 Rev. Charles Awotwi Pratt- Secretary of Conference.
 Rev. Joseph Yedu Bannerman
 Mr. S. H Amissah
 Mr. L.A Creedy- a white missionary in Ghana
 Dr. B. K Bondzie Simpson.

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