Forty-two years after its inception, the Pentecost Students and Associates (PENSA) has recorded its first permanent place of worship following the dedication of the PENSA-Takoradi Technical University (TTU) church auditorium by the Takoradi Area Head, Apostle Joseph Assabil,
The historic event, which took place on Sunday, May 15, 2022, had in attendance Prophet Samuel Tetteh Doku (Takoradi District Minister), Pastor Ebenezer Hagan (Youth Ministry Director), the Takoradi Area pastorate and their wives, as well as the PENSA-TTU Patron, Deaconess Dr. Gladys Quartey, who is also the National Secretary for the Women’s Ministry of The Church of Pentecost.
PENSA Takoradi Technical University (PENSA-TTU), formerly PENSA T-Poly, started in 1985 with six members. The group had the then Brother Opoku Woode (now a minister) as its first president.
As the years went by and the group membership increased, one of the classrooms on campus was given to association as a temporary place of worship. Through the commitment and tireless efforts of the members, the association won more souls to add to their numbers. At a point, the classroom allocated to them could not contain their teeming members; therefore, with the permission of school authorities they began to use large lecture halls for meetings. Later, school authorities directed the leadership of the group to relocate off-campus, partly because their services were hampering evening and weekend lectures, which usually took place at the lecture halls allocated to the group.
The association gained favour in the sight of the leadership of the then Effiakuma New Site Assembly, who accepted to share their place of worship with them in 2004. At the time, the group had a total membership of 530.
The group relocated to the Tanokrom Assembly six years later due to a clash in activities between the association and the New Site Assembly. This intervention was short-lived, and they had to return to the EffiaKuma New Site Assembly even though the earlier challenge persisted.
To navigate the clash in activities, the group resorted to erecting canopies on the premises of the Pentecost Preparatory School for services. Although it served the purpose, it still came with some inconveniences as services were called off whenever it rained.
In 2011, during the tenure of the then Takoradi Area Head, Apostle F. E. Antwi (of blessed memory), the idea for a permanent place of worship was mooted. He, thus, gave the group a plot of land for the project. In 2014, the then Takoradi Travelling Secretary, Pastor Ben Noye, in consultation with the leadership of the group made a proposition to the New Site Assembly to assist them in constructing their building project on the condition that they would be allowed to occupy the top floor upon completion. This was a temporary arrangement even as the association continued work on their building project.
To raise adequate funds, the association sold its bus and received donations from members to support the New Site Assembly church building project. Unfortunately, the project came to a halt later due to unforeseen challenges.
After careful consideration, the new PENSA-TTU leadership headed by Elder J. Ohene-Acquah officially initiated the PENSA-TTU church building project to commemorate the association’s 30th anniversary.
The then Area Head, Apostle Dr. Alfred Koduah (now retired). cut the sod for the commencement of the project on November 4, 2014. The project continued steadily under Elder Benjamin Bruce as PENSA-TTU president and Pastor Emmanuel Opoku Mensah who took over as Travelling Secretary.
The foundation stone for the building was laid by the General Secretary, Apostle Alexander Nana Yaw Kumi Larbi, with assistance from Apostle Dr. Koduah and Pastor Opoku Mensah on November 19, 2017.
All presidents who took over the leadership mantle of PENSA-TTU in the last four years, namely Deacon Samuel Nimako Darkwa, Elder Paul Teye, Elder Samuel Mensah, and Elder Edmond Acheampong, continued with the project at various stages such as plastering, floor casting, doors and windows fixing, plumbing and electrical works, ceiling, floor tiling, and painting, until its completion.
In a short speech, the Dean of Students Affairs at TTU, Dr. Eric Bruce-Amartey Jnr., who represented the Vice-Chancellor at the event, thanked God for the sterling leaders He continues to give The Church of Pentecost. He also applauded the Church for the great impact it has been making in Ghana and for having the youth at heart. This, he said, the Church has once again demonstrated by helping to put up a suitable place of worship for its members on campus.
Apostle Assabil, in his remarks, advised the students to honour their leaders, saying: “honouring your leaders is equivalent to giving reverence to God.”
One of the challenges of the campus ministry, especially at the tertiary level, has been getting a suitable place of worship, and PENSA has been no exemption.
Since its inception in 1980, PENSA has struggled to put up a permanent place of worship for its members on the various campuses in Ghana. As a result, students have to oscillate between worshipping under canopies, lecture halls and rented apartments. Others also have to move from campus to nearby churches to fellowship in their buildings, which, as earlier indicated, is fraught with many inconveniences.
The dedication of the PENSA-TTU church auditorium, therefore, comes as a breath of fresh air and has brought about a new sense of optimism that soon all PENSA branches would have suitable places of worship.
Report by Pastor Emmanuel Opoku Mensah (PENSA Travelling Secretary for Takoradi Sector)