Women speak up: a letter from Ghana

Crosslinks Project Partner Portia Yiadom works with RELITE in Accra, Ghana. RELITE is a Ghanaian-led training scheme for Christian university students. It aims to teach them how to read and study the Bible responsibly, live it practically and teach it faithfully. Portia takes particular care of the female students. She finds that believing women in Ghana have specific and challenging needs that are often unappreciated. Here, she writes an open letter asking for our prayers:

I want to share some of the challenges that Christian women in Ghana face. I asked some of the women in our church what they thought and they suggested a few things that you could be praying about with us.

Many women are passionate for the Lord Jesus but quite often aren’t in churches where the gospel is taught clearly. Few are equipped to read the Bible for themselves and women’s fellowships are scarce. Neither are there many opportunities for one-to-one bible studies to encourage one another and build these women up in the faith. Instead, women tend to spend time with their families, siblings and friends rather than others from their church. Similarly, prayer triplets or duos are hard because people find it difficult to trust one another and share their lives intimately.

Sometimes material and basic needs are very great. When women come to church they hear the pastor preaching the word of God. Because the pastor is unable to meet their physical needs, some of the women go elsewhere to have their needs met. This can lead to sin and a turning away from the church. There is strong pressure to conform to the world in the way women dress, use make-up and have an ‘attitude’ like non-believers.

Christian women say it’s difficult to meet Christian men to marry as many of the men are less spiritually mature. Once they are married some women struggle to balance ministry and family life. Others have to put up with husbands who have other women. Even so, single women often find themselves stigmatised painfully by society.

Some Christian women face financial challenges, coming from poor backgrounds or not having adequate financial support from their husbands. Others don’t have access to information about handling money, which leads to poor financial choices. Lack of funds can make it harder to socialise with other Christian women. For single women it can become a pressure to marry anyone provided he is wealthy.

Poor literacy means that few are able to read their bibles or the small number of Christian books available in Ghana. This is especially true for those trapped in poverty where, for too many, a proper education is not available.

I hope that this gives you a little more insight into the difficulties our sisters have to contend with. Please pray for Christian women in Ghana.

With love in Christ, Portia

This article first appeared in the Crosslinks Magazine of March 2018 and is used with permission. Crosslinks, an Affinity Associate agency, is an international mission society with its roots in the Bible, working largely, though not exclusively, within the worldwide Anglican Communion. Their business is making Christ known through the teaching of God's Word in the power of the Holy Spirit. For more information visit www.crosslinks.org


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