General News of Friday, 10 August 2012
TRIBUTE TO HIS EXCELLENCY, PROFESSOR JOHN EVANS ATTA MILLS LEGON INTERDENOMINATIONAL CHURCH, UNIVERSITY OF GHANA, LEGON
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20
Prof. John Evans Atta Mills joined the Legon Interdenominational Church in the late 1980s and participated actively in church programmes. His commitment to the Lord was unquestionable and he practised what he believed. When the church decided to build its own sanctuary and facilities, he was appointed as the first Chairman of the ‘Building Committee’, a position he held for several years, steering the affairs admirably.
Prof. J.E.A. Mills was a member of the Chapel Preparation Committee and is fondly remembered for his punctuality and ensuring that the chapel was ready for church services. He also served as a member of the Finance Committee for several years, providing leadership and stewardship in faithfully serving as part of the team to count, record and deposit Sunday offertory. He continued to serve in this role even when he was elevated to the position of Vice President of the Republic in 1996. This went on until he was prevailed upon to give it up. Prof Mills’ humility was exemplary. Even in his position as Vice President he did not hesitate to join other church members to perform simple tasks.
The church family is aware that accepting to become Vice-President was an agonizingly difficult decision for Professor Mills. It was through the prayer support and intervention of members and other Christians that eventually he agreed and accepted that God was calling him to play this role on behalf of Ghana. This understanding of the call of God upon His life provided the determination and commitment to stay the course, at immense personal and family cost.
At L.I.C., participation in Bible studies is one of the responsibilities of members of the church. Prof. Atta Mills’ love for the Word of God, showed in his enthusiasm and participation in Bible Studies. His personal devotion was guided by 2 Peter 1: 5-8 “Make every effort to add to your faith, goodness and to goodness, knowledge and to knowledge, self-control and to self-control, perseverance, and to perseverance, godliness and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ”. Prof. Atta Mills’ character as the President of the Republic in exhibiting faith, godliness, goodness, kindness, perseverance and love stemmed from this.
Prof. demonstrated his concern for the deprived and needy practically. On several occasions he donated generously to the church to cater for the needs of disadvantaged members and students but chose not to be publicised. The Council of Elders of the Church used his donations to establish a special fund for this purpose.
With his passing, the Nation, the Church and Family have lost a gentleman, a gallant national servant leader and a soldier of Christ.
Prof., you have fought a good fight, you have finished the race. The conflict with sin, the world, the flesh, and the devil are over for you. Your Excellency, Rest in Peace!
A POEM IN HONOUR OF HIS EXCELLENCY The King Is Home By Theo Aryee © 2012
Before I formed you in the womb … (Jer. 1:5) A wind has traversed our land See the footprints in the sand
The sun rose in the west Beyond the mountains of Ekumfi Rays across the Tarkwaian The moon beamed brightest From the forests of Achimota Lights over the Accraian The star shone at Legon Where the conquest begun On the fields of play Hockey and football Matchless skills lay In the lecture hall Law’s luminary was found A voice that will resound In the hearts of myriad students To face life with confidence A precedent Of a President Tax man uncorrupted Integrity untainted Vice unknown for vice Others brewed harm You served peace Son of Otuam! A president Unprecedented
…the living should take this to heart (Eccl 7:2b) The Odum tree has fallen Birds have no place to perch
The King went to the forest To pluck a leaf He did not return The sun covers its face Sikaman lags the race Against the constellations Of celestials and mystery Who conspire against the nations Casting us into misery Our mothers wail Their breaths fail Folded arms on heads Girls collect pieces of broken pots Boys collect pieces of broken shields Linguist has leaf in mouth Skin on talking drum tattered cloth Singer descants laments Dancer feet noosed in swamps Baby pillows stones Rivers freeze and walk atop our stale airs
…and whoever lives and believes in me… (Jn 11:26) In the death of death, The life of Life
To whom do we turn? Turn to Odomankoma Nana Nyam’ankomah: Lone-giver of grace For life’s race By those who repent And believe in Christ:
Nani ataishi milele?
JE Atta Mills Y’ascend the hills To yonder shores Beyond the chores Of Adam’s Fall Wonder-full!
The Odum fell It stands The Captain fell He stands Havened In heaven
Wanye Naadu Mills, wange mo kpo ha* Otuam, Ekumfi,hom ‘hye dzen’**
Ghana Be strong March forward!
*Naadu Mills, our condolences **Otuam, Ekumfi, our condolences!