The Chairman of The Church of Pentecost, Apostle Eric Nyamekye, on Sunday, March 7, 2021, dedicated the newly-constructed church building of the Samuel Richard Asomaning Memorial Temple in the Asamankese Area of the church.
The beautiful church auditorium, which took three years to complete, has a seating capacity of 1500, two administrative offices, a conference room, library/museum room, a storeroom, Information Technology (IT) centre, a room for lactating mothers, eight washrooms and a spacious car park.
Madam Florence Asomaninwaa was commended for contributing an amount of GHS 1,350,000.00 out of the GHS 2,158,360.00 spent on the project. The remaining funds were raised through grants from the Head Office, the Akim Oda Area, the Asamankese Area, and the Akroso District.
The Chairman was ably supported by the General Secretary, Apostle Alexander Nana Yaw Kumi-Larbi, the Area Head, Apostle Isaac Ekow Eshun, and the Akroso District Minister, Pastor Anthony K. Obeng.
Other dignitaries present at the event were Apostle Samuel O. Asante (Executive Council Member and Koforidua Area Head), Apostle Seth Kwaku Asomaning (Akim Oda Area Head), Apostle Derek Kwaning Mireku (Agona Swedru Area Head) and Pastor A.E.K. Ekuban (Suhum Area Head).
Delivering a short sermonette titled “Keep the Pentecostal Fire Burning,” Apostle Kumi-Larbi stated that the history of The Church of Pentecost cannot be written without the mention of Akroso because it played a very significant part in the church’s humble beginnings.
He stated that it is incumbent on the current generation to continue to fan into flame the Pentecostal fire lit by the forebears of the church through prayer, rich apostolic teachings, and godly fellowship.
Using Leviticus 6:8-11, Acts 1:4-8, Acts 2:1-4, Acts 2:42 and Luke 11:35 as Bible references, the General Secretary stated that anytime God called people to serve His purpose, He often revealed Himself to them as fire. This, he said, was to indicate that God was with them.
Apostle Kumi-Larbi advised church members to make themselves available and dedicate themselves to God so that His fire will continue to burn in them as it was with their forebears.
Apostle Eric Nyamekye, in his remarks, added that the beauty of the temple represents the life of God in the Church and for this reason, the church must keep on fanning into flame the fire they possess for the glory of God to be seen by the watching-world.
He further reiterated that the Asamankese Area and its environs serve as the location where the Pentecostal torch was first lit by the founder of the church, Rev. James McKeown, hence, they must not relent in fanning this great fire into flames.
The Samuel Richard Asomaning Memorial Temple is one of the historic buildings of the church which dates to the early beginnings of the church in the then Gold Coast. Quite rightly, the church has been named after the late Samuel Richard Asomaning, one of the key founding members of The Church of Pentecost and the first ordained apostle of the church.
Apostle S. R. Asomaning was converted into the faith by his brother-in-law, the late Rev. James Smith Kwaku Gyimah, who, according to historical narratives, was among the first persons to have received Holy Spirit baptism in the country in the 1920s. Rev. James Smith, then a Presbyterian Catechist, was disowned by his mother-church because he had received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. His expulsion from the church caused him to start preaching the gospel message of Christ on the streets. His evangelism efforts yielded souls for Christ, one of whom was Samuel Richard Asomaning, with whom he started a small prayer group. This group later associated with the Asamankese group led by the late Rev. Peter Anim.
Following the infamous dissociation of Rev. James McKeown by the Asamankese group led by Rev. Peter Anim on the grounds of the “no-medication doctrine,” the Akroso group joined forces with Rev. McKeown and brought him to the town to settle there. At Akroso, Rev. McKeown started a fellowship at his residence in a suburb called Ataakwasi. Rev. S. R. Asomaning later donated a parcel of land where a small thatch was erected by the church to serve as its first place of worship. Thus, the church was moved from Rev. McKeown’s residence.
As church membership grew, there was a need for a permanent and appropriate church structure to be constructed. This led to the construction of the Rev. J. S. Gyimah Memorial Temple in 1975. This edifice is being used by the English Assembly of the Akroso District as a place of worship.
On July 13, 2016, the Akroso District received approval from the Apostle Professor Opoku Onyinah-led Executive Council to construct an ultramodern auditorium in memory of Apostle S. R. Asomaning.
Madam Florence Asomaniwah, the only surviving daughter of late Apostle Asomaning, donated a parcel of land to support this cause. The land at the time was siting two separate buildings belonging to the Asomaning family and an old mission house. The buildings were, thus, demolished for the new project to begin.
On Friday, February 26, 2017, the then Akim Oda Area Head, Apostle Kofi Dzemekey, with assistance from Apostle J. S. Gyimah (Rtd.) and the then-District Minister, Pastor Anthony K. Obeng, cut the sod for the commencement of the project.
Apostle Peter K. Dzemekey and Apostle Seth Kwaku Asomaning also supervised the project at various stages of construction when they took over as Akim Oda Area Heads. The Asamankese Area Head, Apostle Isaac Eshun, however, supervised the final stages of the project after the Akroso District was ceded to the Asamankese Area in 2019.
In attendance at the dedication ceremony were Nana Kwabena Ofori II (Chief of Akroso), Hon. Joyce Korang Aboagye (Member of Parliament – MP, Akim Asena-Manso-Akroso) Hon. Mercy Adu-Gyimfi (Former MP, Akwatia), other opinion leaders of Akroso and the family members of the late Apostle S. R. Asomaning.