Prayer Centres as Avenues of Contemporary Spiritual Renewal in The Presbyterian Church of Ghana

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ABSTRACT

Prayer centres appeared in Ghanaian Christianity in the early parts of the twentieth century and were mainly found within the African Initiated Churches (AICs). They later became prominent in Classical Pentecostal Churches, especially the Church of Pentecost (CoP) with most of them seceding to become independent ministries. The concept of prayer centres gradually emerged in western mission founded denominations including the Presbyterian Church of Ghana (PCG). The PCG over time recognized the prayer centres within its structures and integrated them into its activities where they have become major avenues of spiritual renewal programmes. This study, therefore, investigated the emergence of prayer centres as avenues of contemporary spiritual renewal in the PCG. The study was grounded on the theory of religious innovation traced to the works of Harold Turner, Everest Rogers and Clair Disbrey and discussed in the Ghanaian context by Elizabeth Amoah. It employed the historical approach to investigate when prayer centres emerged in the PCG as well as the factors that accounted for their emergence and acceptance. Historical documents on the PCG such as reports and minutes of various courts as well as scholarly materials on the Pentecostal renewal in Ghana and globally were also studied. The phenomenological approach was adopted to interrogate the ministry of prayer centres and the extent to which they represent an innovative phenomenon in the PCG. Among the major findings are that prayer centres in the PCG emerged mainly through the initiative of individual members within the Bible Study and Prayer Group, (BSPG).

The prayer centres in the PCG have since institutionalised a kind of spirituality that meets the needs of people who patronise them thereby attracting a large patronage of both Presbyterians and non-Presbyterians. The study argued that prayer centres have impacted University of Ghana http://ugspace.ug.edu.gh iii the mission of the PCG and other denominations by building the capacities of people for ministry in various ways. They have also contributed to increasing church attendance and growth of the congregations where they are located, raising the financial resources of local congregations and also forging ecumenical ties. The ministry of prayer centres in the PCG was also found to be associated with some challenges such as tension between those in charge of the centres and regular leadership of congregations. The study concludes that the emergence of prayer centres in the PCG is basically attributable to the church’s openness towards spiritual renewal activities. With the emergence of prayer centres in the PCG the focus of spiritual renewal activities in the church over the last decade has shifted from the BSPG to the prayer centres. Furthermore, practices such as deliverance are likely to persist in Ghanaian Christianity, hence, it is recommended that theological educators must find ways of integrating it into their curriculum so as to provide the right biblical and theological preparations for ministers and persons in that ministry to effectively handle it. The study identified traces of prophetism and the practice of anointing in the activities of the prayer centres and recommends that a further study is undertaken to interrogate them.

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APA

BUERTEY, E (2022). Prayer Centres as Avenues of Contemporary Spiritual Renewal in The Presbyterian Church of Ghana. Afribary. Retrieved from https://afribary.com/works/prayer-centres-as-avenues-of-contemporary-spiritual-renewal-in-the-presbyterian-church-of-ghana

MLA 8th

BUERTEY, EDWIN "Prayer Centres as Avenues of Contemporary Spiritual Renewal in The Presbyterian Church of Ghana" Afribary. Afribary, 16 Jun. 2022, https://afribary.com/works/prayer-centres-as-avenues-of-contemporary-spiritual-renewal-in-the-presbyterian-church-of-ghana. Accessed 18 Aug. 2022.

MLA7

BUERTEY, EDWIN . "Prayer Centres as Avenues of Contemporary Spiritual Renewal in The Presbyterian Church of Ghana". Afribary, Afribary, 16 Jun. 2022. Web. 18 Aug. 2022. < https://afribary.com/works/prayer-centres-as-avenues-of-contemporary-spiritual-renewal-in-the-presbyterian-church-of-ghana >.

Chicago

BUERTEY, EDWIN . "Prayer Centres as Avenues of Contemporary Spiritual Renewal in The Presbyterian Church of Ghana" Afribary (2022). Accessed August 18, 2022. https://afribary.com/works/prayer-centres-as-avenues-of-contemporary-spiritual-renewal-in-the-presbyterian-church-of-ghana