Denied communion, he quits, starts a church which turns 50 this year

How would you feel if you visited your church on a normal Sunday morning only to be told that you cannot have communion because you are not qualified to?

This is not a church you are visiting for the first time, It is a place you have been worshiping and taking Holy Communion for the past two years! 

For some, this dispiriting experience means the end of their Christian lives and church membership.They would go home and never return.

But the above incident is what motivated Prof. Felix Konotey-Ahulu, a renowned physician and sickle cell researcher to establish a church that turned 50 years in 2017.

“For two years we had been worshiping at Osu Baptist Church, having Holy Communion in the Church from 1965 to February 1967.” Prof Felix Konotey-Ahulu, narrated amidst sobs to the congregation during the celebration of the church’s 50th anniversary.

“But on this particular Sunday ,we (Prof. Konotey-Ahulu and wife, Rosemary) saw this American Pastor come down from the pulpit and walk down past those who were taking the Holy Communion and come to us at the back.”

“He put his hands around my shoulder and said, Felix and Rosemary in the past week we decided that because you have not been totally immersed in baptism, you cannot have communion with us.”

This was both intriguing and hard for Prof. Konotey-Ahulu to absorb. He did not want to truncate the ongoing church service by arguing with the pastor in the church. “So I looked at him and asked him to come out. We came out and I asked him to repeat what he had just said,” he reminisced in a breaking sad voice.

The pastor repeated exactly what he said, “Because you both have not been fully immersed in Baptism, you can’t take communion with us.”

“I began to cry and my wife squeezed my hand and said, ‘darling, why can’t we start a church now?’”

Those seemingly simple words from his wife, was the genesis of the Accra Chapel, now Korle-bu Community Chapel (KBCC).

The church which started out with a small group, meeting to share the word of God, now has an ultra-modern church building, big enough to accommodate the ever growing membership.

The church also has a full-time pastor and an education foundation.

Narrating the rather sad incident that led to the establishment of the church, Prof. Konotey-Ahulu, quoted Romans 8:28, interlacing the Bible verse around his circumstances, “All things, including being  driven away from the Lord’s table, works together for the good for those who love God,“ he said.

“I want anyone here, passing through difficult situations. Those who don’t understand what is happening to them. If they love God, whatever they are passing through now is meant to glorify God,” he encouraged church members and visitors alike who had gathered for the 50th anniversary celebration.

Mr Yeboah Kordee, a member of the church for almost 28 years who has served as a leader in an interview with, said, “we are celebrating the goodness of God today and this is supposed to be a new beginning of this great church to experience his power.”

Mrs. Theresa Barnes, who was a singer in the church but now an usher, was thankful to God for the dramatic change and growth in the church: ”Looking back 50 years ago, the number that started the church and the number we have now shows that we have come very far as a church. There has been a dramatic change. We have moved from relying on other pastors to training our own pastors to lead the church.”

“Out of this church have come a lot of successful churches. Some members of the church have moved to establish successful churches like Light House, Pantang Hospital Church and Legon Interdenominational Church,” said Mr David Quashie Doku, one of the longest serving members of the church.

“As the church celebrates its 50th anniversary today, I want to see the church grow into a church militant saving people from the gate of hell,” he added.

By Pamela Ofori-Boateng

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1 Comment
  1. Akwasi Prempeh says

    Lovely piece Pam

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