Religion of Thursday, 19 December 2013
Right Reverend Dr Daniel Sylvanus Mensah Torto, Bishop of Accra Anglican Diocese, has noted that Christmas challenges Christians to be human and as creatures in God’s image and likeness.
He said Christians should “let what is human guide our life together as a family, as a nation and as citizens of the world”.
In a Christmas message he released on Wednesday and copied to Ghana News Agency in Accra, Bishop Torto said: “As the Holy Christmas Season comes round each year, the message of Jesus, Who is light in the midst of darkness, echoes once more from the Crib of Bethlehem.
“It is a message which lights up with heavenly truth a world that is plunged in darkness and chaos by fatal errors.
“The message of the birth of the Messiah infuses exuberant and trustful joy into humankind, torn by the anxiety of deep, bitter sorrow, “he said.
Bishop Torto said Christmas proclaims liberty, which is God’s creation, shackled with the chains of sin and guilt.
“It promises mercy, love, peace to the countless hosts of those in suffering, who see their happiness shattered and their efforts broken in the tempestuous strife and hate of our stormy days.”
He noted that a year ago, Ghana went through elections, and the aftermath were tons of court petitions.
Bishop Torto said the major opposition party- New Patriotic Party, took the peaceful path and after almost eight months in court, Ghana emerged as the winner.
He said that transition was a measure of the growing maturity of Ghana.
“So, already we have on our agenda the task of securing that growing maturity. Only we, Ghanaians, can secure it. It is all of us, not some of the people, not just the President; Not just the Party in power; not just the leader of the Opposition; Not just the Opposition. But all of us working together to secure the peace and security of the nation; each and all.
“I wish to urge that we should not lose sight of a basic fact that the foregoing development is the success of Ghana as a whole, losers and victors alike. If the Opposition had not, in its own way, conceded defeat after the verdict, the nation would have been thrown into confusion.
“If the leadership of the victorious party had not made gestures of magnanimity and mutual respect, we would have been on tenterhooks. It is a sign of maturity when in the midst of the disputes regarding the elections, the parties have agreed to settle disputes and differences through legal processes, not some brawls and coup d’états. Thank God for this march of progress and achievement.
“Our history is replete with evidence of corruption at all levels, not only of government or politicians but, also, of ordinary citizens. The evidence is that corruption ruins the nation and the society.
“The government has shown signs of leading in combating corruption, and I wish to call on all to lend a hand, “Bishop Torto said.
He said with the spate of technological advancement in the country and the world, Ghanaians must watch and tame their tongues, adding: “I wish to admonish all of us to learn from the story of Rwanda, that horrendous massacres came about because of an evil word by one person.”
“Having come this far, as religious persons, this development, for us is a gift of grace- unmerited favour from God. It is by grace that Ghana has not gone the way of some African nations, and for that we Ghanaians must show and are showing gratitude to God the Almighty, the Creator; who holds the whole world in the palm of His hand.”