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Christians freed, souls saved after baptism drowning

Recent flooding in the Swedru region of Ghana, west of the capital, Accra, wiped out bridges and made rivers dangerous. (Photo provided by David Essuman)

Church members in Ghana say their prayers were answered after three Christians, accused of playing a role in the death of a minister, were exonerated.
As we reported previously, the minister, Derick Ayensu, slipped and fell in a fast-flowing river after baptizing two men near the village of Mensakrom, Ghana. His body was found downstream six days later, said Christopher Arthur, a minister in the nearby city of Swedru who coordinates the village ministry.
“Police came and arrested the two new converts (and) the brother in charge of the village church,” Arthur said, “and the police wanted to charge them with negligence of duty leading to death.”
After days of prayer and court appearances, the charges were dropped on Monday.

Noah Mends

As they emerged from the courtroom in Swedru, family members “poured talcum powder on the freed Christians to signify victory,” said Noah Mends, another evangelist in the Swedru region.
More than 500 people attended a memorial service for Ayensu, Mends said. Baptized in 2005, Ayensu was an active leader in the Swedru congregation.
“Derick died as a great hero for the Lord, like John the Baptist during the time of King Herod,” Mends said.
During the memorial service, Arthur told church members that they must expect difficulties.
“Even in the worst of times, they should remember God’s faithfulness and that he will be exalted,” Mends said. “While obeying God may not always be easy, it is eternally rewarding.”
Overwhelmed by the show of support, Ayensu’s father and aunt, who were not Christians, were baptized one day after the funeral — in the same river where Ayensu perished, Mends said.
Ayensu’s father “was touched by the work his son did for the Lord,” Mends said, “and he promised to be closer to God than ever. We need for you all to pray for them.”

Derick Ayensu died in a fast-flowing river after performing two baptisms. He was an active member of a Church of Christ in Swedru, Ghana. (Photo provided by Steven Black)

  • Feedback
    God truly works in mysterious ways, but work He surely does.Thanks God that He is alive and working in the lives of all of us. Our prayers are for our brothers and sisters in Ghana.
    James Haney
    July, 27 2010

    What great news! Prayer is always so important in our lives. It is so good to hear about the great work that is being done there for the Lord and the excitement because of it. We know that our trials and struggles
    will draw us closer to the Lord! Dan
    Dan DuPey
    July, 27 2010

    Thanks for the story and update. The Kingdom of God is so amazing and so widespread. We often forget what others endure to see Jesus preached in this broken world.
    Keith Roberts
    July, 27 2010

    Great stuff. Looking forward to your article on Singapore. You never did respond if I can use it for our PP church bulletin. Will give proper credits and a link to cc website. Thanks
    Henry kong
    July, 27 2010

    “…. church members … they must expect difficulties.”
    “Even in the worst of times, they should remember God�s faithfulness and that he will be exalted,� Mends said. �While obeying God may not always be easy, it is eternally rewarding.”
    needed to hear that now.
    July, 27 2010

    Thanks for the comments, everyone. Henry, of course you can use the Singapore information for your church’s bulletin. (I’ll let you know when the revised version is ready. We just went to press with that story today.)
    Erik Tryggestad
    July, 27 2010

Filed under: Breaking News News Extras

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