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Father’s Day has come again, and we want to celebrate our fathers of the church also. I mean our pastors. In this write-up, I invite you to celebrate with me one of our fathers – Rev Prof Abamfo Atiemo, Chairperson of the Europe Presbytery of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana. Papa appears quite soft and self-effacing but when it comes to the things of God and the care for the Lord’s sheep, the lion in him is unleashed and refuses to be cowed by any individual or crowd. There are several inspiring stories about him in which he championed the cause of vulnerable people before powerful community leaders, performed supernatural feats, or made bold decisions to bring reforms in congregations he pastored amidst serious opposition, even if he had to stand alone, always believing as the Fathers of the reformed tradition did that “One with God is always a majority.”

The story below is culled from the Fiftieth Anniversary Brochure of the Logos Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, Achimota College, Accra.


A pastor’s duties include teaching/preaching, visitation, counselling, comforting, taking care of the needs of people, and performing rites of passage, such as naming/baptisms, weddings, and funerals. Other responsibilities may be office duties, organizing church business meetings, planning and carrying out programs for the church, and serving as the face of the church to the community.

However, the pastor of Logos Congregation, Rev. Dr Abamfo Atiemo, adopts a people-centered approach beyond these traditional roles. Most members may not be aware but Papa, as he is affectionately called, often sacrifices his personal comforts and risks his life in ensuring that his church members are safe and happy. One such instance is captured in a story narrated by Mr. Kwesi Mboada, of the Logos Young Adult Fellowship (YAF), who accompanied Papa on one such mission. It was a real adventure.

Mr. Kwesi Mboada is in a formal employment with the University of Ghana but doubles as a part-time taxi driver. He recounts that two years ago, he was home one Thursday morning when Papa asked him on the phone to come over to his house for an assignment. Upon reaching Papa’s residence he asked where they were going, and Papa answered they were going to a suburb of Accra to attempt to trap and arrest some criminals who posed as football player recruitment agents and defrauded unsuspecting victims. One of the young members of the church had fallen victim to their tricks.

These fraudsters had taken big sums of money from the young man and dumped him somewhere in Asia. There was no football agent or team or any person to meet him at the airport as stated in the contract. Our young brother was therefore stranded. He had no money on him, but he mustered courage and succeeded in establishing contact with his parents and Papa. Together with Papa, the parents managed to get him back to Ghana safely after several weeks. To prevent their victim from coming to Ghana a free person and, probably, to report them to the police, the fraudsters also gave false information to the security desk at the airport that somebody bearing his name would be coming on a flight from somewhere in Asia carrying drugs. This was to cause his arrest at the airport if he did return so that he would not be free to pursue them.

But praise the Lord, all those hurdles were overcome, with some difficulty though, and the young man finally returned home. Papa was determined to expose the gang and make them pay back the money they had taken from our church member. How would Papa do this? Papa got the cellphone numbers of the leader of the gang. He pretended he had footballers he wanted to send out to play football and he wanted help. He told the fraudster he got his contact from a coach who had mentioned him as the best agent to help footballers find a team in Europe. He agreed to meet Papa to finalize the transaction. Papa promised to pay the contracted amount he had charged at the planned meeting.

Kwesi Mboada stated that he drove Papa in his taxi to a certain location. It was at this point that Papa informed him that the police had laid an ambush and were covering them. Kwesi couldn’t believe it. While in the taxi, Papa was communicating with both the police and the unsuspecting fraudsters. Upon arriving at the meeting place with the fraudsters, Kwesi dropped off Papa at a distance and parked the taxi.

Papa made a call to the agent to let him know he had arrived. The fraudsters emerged from an alley; there were two of them. After they met, the fraudsters asked Papa to accompany them to their house to finalize the deal. As they walked, Papa mentioned that he needed to find a place to urinate. “As one of them was trying to find a place for Papa to urinate, a plain-clothed policeman grabbed him from behind and a struggle ensued. They tried to escape but Papa, under the unction of the Holy Spirit was energized with an unbelievable strength, and running like Usain Bolt gave them a hot chase. Uniformed policemen who had been hiding in their parked car a distance away from the place suddenly rushed in to help. The leader was arrested but his accomplice escaped,” Kwesi recalled.

He continued: “On our way back home, I told Papa that I had never seen a Pastor like him who out of genuine love for his congregation would go to such lengths to help them in times of need. I was utterly shocked by what Papa did and told him he could easily become a police detective. That was indeed a daring move by Papa and he needs to be celebrated.

While he struggled with the fraudster, anything could have happened to him. The guy was stoutly built and could easily have given Papa a blow which could have wounded him! But God was certainly with Papa and nothing happened to him. How many of us can sacrifice like this for our fellows?” Kwesi wondered.



(Written by: Kwadwo Anim, Culled from the 50th Anniversary Brochure of the Logos Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, Achimota College, Accra.)

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