Ethnicity and the church : the case of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana
Ethnicity and the Church are two vital subjects in mission studies. However, the focus has always been on the latter. As a result the Church's theology of ethnicity is weak. Fear, ethnocentrism and theological blindness account for the little interest in the subject of ethnicity. However, a Church that neglects ethnicity does so at her own peril. God's dealings with IsraeL a history of the growth of the Church from one culture to another makes the study of ethnicity imperative. Failure to acknowledge and harness ethnicity can lead to ethnocentrism or tribalism which is an enemy to God's mission. God's mission essentially reconciles, unites and enriches people from different ethnic groups whilst ethnocentrism or tribalism excludes, divides and impoverishes them. The Presbyterian Church of Ghana like the wider society has to cope with ethnicity. Whereas the Church has harnessed ethnicity in her mission, she has, nonetheless, failed always to do away with ethnocentrism or tribalism. The PCG has not been faithful to her parent missionaries' strategy of planting indigenous churches among the non-Akan and non-Ga. The current PCG's strategy amounts to Akan-Ga cultural mission. Ethnicity and Christian identity are crucial to providing people with their true secure identity. A Christian always has to come to terms with his dual identity, that is, belonging to an ethnic group as well as to Christ. A theology that affirms this dual identity will be in a position to have healthy multi-ethnic churches and be effective in mission. Andrew Walls' Three Tests of Christian expansion: The Church, The Kingdom and The Gospel Tests serve as our measuring instrument. The PCG has not passed these Tests satisfactorily. She needs the Pentecost experience, that is a fresh touch of the Holy Spirit. The thrust of this thesis is that, when the PCG experiences this Pentecost, integration, reconciliation and embrace will be achievable among her multi-ethnic membership.