Church not antagonistic to tradition - Clergyman

BY GNA - Mar 12, 2021 at 2:51am 100

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The Reverend Kwame Banahene, Associate Pastor, Tema Community One Presbyterian Church, has said the Church was not an established institution that frowned upon traditional ceremonies, but built on it in the Christian way.

He said the Church recognised some of the symbolism in traditional practices such as naming and marriages ceremonies, “we are not antagonistic to such practices, but the church as a family also has traditions which it encourages its adherents to follow”.

Rev Banahene said this in an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Tema, the nation celebrated the month with special focus on Ghanaian Heritage.

The Presbyterian Pastor recounted that, in the past, children were given names on the eighth day of birth and during the naming ceremony the child was brought out early in the morning and laid on the bare floor where dew dropped from atop of the roof on to the child.

He said the traditional significance was “to inform the child that naked it came; and naked it shall return to the maker when the time was nigh”.

Rev. Banahene said, afterwards, the child was lifted up and then the traditional leader performing the naming ceremony dipped his finger into water and dropped it on the tongue of the baby and also the same process was repeated with an alcoholic drink to symbolize truth from lies.

He said the head of the family would then announce the name of the child to all present, then gifts are presented to the child and the mother.

Rev Banahene explained that the traditional symbolisms were important but within the church system, it was modified to signify the Christian faith in Ghana.

He added that the only change was the use of alcohol as that was replaced with non-alcoholic drinks since "Christians were not permitted to take hard liquor."

He added, the Church did not mostly have a laid down processes for naming as it all depended on the family.

"As to when and what day they would want the naming to take place and it could even be on the 8th day, the Church would still do it for the family" he said.

Mrs Gloria Diawuo, a Marriage Counsellor advised that, parents should ensure that they named their children on the 8th day after birth, if the child and mother were healthy.

She said in the past, children were named on the 8th day as a symbolism that the child had come to stay.