THE HISTORY OF ST. ANDREWS ANGLICANS CHURCH-JECHIE
The St. Andrews Church Jachie was established in 1914 a year after the establishment of St. Cyprian’s Church Kumasi. This was during the reign of Nana Baffour Dumgya the then Jachiehene.
The Church was not first to be established in Jachie, the Presbyterian, the Methodist and Catholic Churches were the first but because of many idols worshipping none of these Churches survived.
The Anglican Church did not start as a Church but rather as a school. This was the first of its kind in the Jachie town. A year later the late Baffour Kwadwo Dumgya, Jachiehene and the late J.E. Adusei, royal of Jachie and one of the first scholars of Jachie together with the stool elders wanted to bring a Church again to Jachie.
This was because of the belief that when a Church comes into a town, that town prospers. After a concrete decision had been taken Mr. J.E. Adusei and Kwabena Ankoma were delegated to go to Kumasi to see the people who brought the school there to come and establish a church in Jachie to support the school. On arrival in Kumasi they went to the Church authorities of the school. The late Archdeacon G. W. Morrison was the Priest- In -Charge of St. Cyprian’s Church in Kumasi. He told the delegation that before an Anglican Church could be established anywhere outside Kumasi a petition must be sent to the Governor for permission to establish the Church. Consequently the petition was sent and the Governor granted the request on condition that some people from Jachie sign a bond to commit themselves to be responsible for the welfare of the new Church.
These demands were made because Jachie was place where paganism, traditionalism and were idol worshipping was firmly established. And it was a taboo for nay Jachie citizen to declare or come out as a Christian believer, at is why the first three Churches could not survive.
However, there were some people who were bold enough to abandon their traditional religion in favor of the White man’s religion which was Christianity. These people were the late Kwabena Ankoma, Opanin John Mensah and Mr. J.E. Adusei.
These people signed the bond to be caretakers of the new Church. They were told that if the Church collapsed they would be imprisoned.
In 1915 the (SPG) Society for the Propagation of the Gospel started their evangelical activities in Jachie. The first person to be trained, as a Church worker was Mr. J. E. Adiduah who became a teacher-catechist in 1916.
The next to be trained was another Catechist Mr. D. J. Oppong. We are very grateful to God that one of those who were first baptized in 1916 is still alive. She is the person of Madam Dorcas Yawson. We also very grateful to God that the founding members of the Church are being followed by their children. These children have become staunch members of the Church. I would like to name them Opanin Mensah at Chirapatire St. Mary’s Church and Madam Clara Oppong a retired teacher at Jachie.
In the beginning there was no place for the congregation to meet for worship. The Chief offered the new Church a place in his palace and services were held there with Mr. D. J. Oppong a native of Jachie as a Catechist. Jachie soon became an Outstation of St. Cyprian’s Parish. there was no resident Priest so some Priest came from Kumasi to visit and worship with the local converts. Among such Priest were Archdeacon G.W. Morrison, Rev. Fr. Peter (Whiteman) and Rev. Fr. Evans.
It was during the time of Evans that the old chapel was built all the visiting Priests who came from Kumasi to visit the Church stayed in Opanin Aboas- house. As the Church grew in number and converts increased a bamboo shed was raised for the school and the church which were both operating in the Chief’s palace.
Within few years another Chief came onto the stool he was Nana Baffour Amoateng I. He and his Elders decided to put up a proper Church building. They made burnt bricks and put up the first Church building.
Bishop John Offe Aglionby financed the Church building project. The Priest who was first to be the resident Priest was Fr. Peter who stayed in Opanin Aboas house for seven years. All the Priests who came to Jachie were Whiteman and because of that they contributed heavily in money to support the Church and the school.
From 1916 onwards there was no other school in this locality. The Anglican School at Jachie was the only school where most of the people from Jachie and the neighborhood received their education. The first black Priest who was posted to Jachie was the late Canon Jacob Yeboah. He arrived in 1952 in 1958 Jachie was declared a Parish. During this period there was only the Bishop of Accra the Rt. Rev. J.O. Anglioby who visited Jachie and conducted confirmation service in 1925, that was the first of its kind to be held in Jachie prior all the confirmation candidates were sent to Kumasi for confirmation.
In 1925 the Bishop declared Jachie as a Catechist Training Centre under the able leadership of Mr. D. J. Oppong. Some of those who were trained here were sent to Nkoranza as teacher Catechists Mr. Kwashie and Mr. D. F. Coudjie who was also transferred to Kumawu as a teacher catechist were among this group of Jachie trained Catechists.
The Akwaduo Church was established a year after the Jachie Church but Nuuso,Apinkra and Adunku were planted later. After 15 years under Mr. Elias Jossiah Amnussah. Jachie was declared a Parish by the Rt. Rev. R. R. Roseveare Bishop of Accra on the 10th August 1958. The Archdeacon of Kumasi at the time was Archdeacon Brewer. After Canon J. K. Yeboah came Canon D. K. Poku, Rev. Fr. A. C. Agyeman and then Fr. Johm Krofi who came and met the newly enstooled, Nana Okyere Agyekum as the Jachiehene. The new Chief was a staunch member of the Church before his enstoolment.
Nana Okyere Agyekum met Rev. Fr. Akrofi and some of the members and discussed the possibility of possibility of putting up a new Church building to replace the old one. At that time the Church had only $50 in its coffers. When they started they received a grant of $500 from USPG to continue the project.
The Church was financed by the Church members who contributed communal labour and made voluntary contributions in cash. We are very grateful to the almighty God for giving us Rev. John Akrofi a man of vision and through whose dynamism we are enjoying worship in this magnificent Church building, as Tertullian the great theologian said!! The blood of the Martyrs is the seed of the church!!
Also our thanks go to Rev. Canon Nsiah who put up the new mission house, which now accommodates all clergy who posted to Jachie. It is rather unfortunate that the good work which John Akrofi started has come to a standstill because there a lot which needs to be completed, these include needs to be given terrazzo.
The chapel floor needs to be terrazzo the pews should be completed. Seventy more pews are needed because during occasions like this we are compelled to hire chairs. Now we have also started store and a Conference Hall, which are still under construction. These need to be completed as well.
Since the establishment of the Church some Parishioners have emerged under her nurturing to become clergymen. They are Rev. Fr. Addai boating of blessed memory Rev. Fr. Clement Adu Sarkodie now at Domi-Beposo as Parish Priest and Rev. Fr. Mensah who is currently in Brussels. Now because of the Anglican Church we have the OPH Sisters who are stationed here and who are now putting up magnificent convert along the Akwaduo road. We are very grateful to God for such a wonderful gifts of the sisters who will soon be training our children especially the girls for us, we have the Eye Clinic Centre which is also in progress and manned by the OHP Sisters. We wish to express our appreciation to them for the excellent work they are doing.
We also wish to express our appreciation to Nana Jachiehene Baffour Amoateng III for his kind support in diverse ways and also to Nana &Mrs. Asamoah Nkosuohene of Jachie who have always contributed immensely towards the church development and progress. We also wish to express our thanks to Madam Nyarko and her family who provided the beautiful altar and the terrazzo on the altar, the pulpit and the clergy vestments. We are proud to say that because of their kindness we have enough vestments for our worship. We are also very grateful to the Parish Priest Rev. Fr. Agyekum for his vision for the new ongoing projects especially the stores and the Conference Hall.
Finally we would like to give thanks to all the Church members, PCC the Guild and all the societies. Our thanks also go our well-wishes and kind donors who have made it possible for us to enjoy service in the present Church of ours. We ask for god blessings for god blessings for every one whose sacrifice has made it possible for us to celebrate this 75th anniversary of St. Andrew Parish.