by Monte Sahlin

By AT News Team, February 26, 2014
 
In a country where inter-religious strife has sometimes become violent, a spokesperson for the Seventh-day Adventist denomination has urged religious leaders to check negative preaching about their peers in other faiths. Solace Asafo-Hlordzi, communication director for the denomination's Southern Ghana Union Conference, stated that it is not enough for pastors to criticize their peers who they believe are misleading people, but they must effectively communicate their messages.
 
She urged pastors to make themselves and their churches relevant to the communities in which they live and worship if they want to win them to join their congregations. Asafo-Hlordzi was conducting training for Adventist pastors in Koforidua and a reporter for the Ghana News Association (GNA), the primary wire service in the country, picked up the statement.
 
The Adventist leader "reminded participants that their church buildings, the environment around their church buildings, … and their behavior in the community, [all] serve as a means of communication of the church to the community," GNA reported. She recommended "simply designed church buildings, using local materials with attractive environments that would attract more people in the community to join their congregation, than building huge cathedrals which are never completed for years."
 
Angela Mano, a regional director of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation, called for concerted efforts by all religious and civic leaders to help fight the problems facing the country, according to GNA. The Adventist denomination has 1,272 local churches in Ghana with a total membership of 410,00 among the 25 million population. At least one church member, the Hon. Kwame Osei-Prempeh, has served as an elected member of parliament since 1997.