The Presiding Bishop’s Address On The Occasion Of The Launch of The Financing Strategy on July 9, 2023
Beloved in Christ, I greet you in the Name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and pray that the Peace of God will continue to be with you and your families.
We are eternally grateful to the Lord, whose grace and mercy have been with us and kept us alive up to the seventh month of the year, in spite of the current global economic turbulence confronting all of us. God has always manifested his presence in our midst and we should be thankful for His providence which has been our defence.
You may all be aware of the circumstances that led to the decision to construct a new Conference Office. Indeed, it must have been communicated to you on several occasions and you have just seen a video documentary that highlights the background to the construction of the Wesley Towers.
Construction work on the project started in earnest in November 2019 and to the glory of God, project execution progressed smoothly even in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic and its attendant global financial meltdown. Beloved in Christ, I am very happy and proud to announce to you that the project has substantially been completed and is awaiting handing over to us by China Hualong Construction Plc, the Contractors, Hallelujah! The people called Methodists now have a new 16-storey Conference Office called The Wesley Towers, situated in a very high-end area in the Ambassadorial Enclave in Accra, glory be to God!
Let me state that our original intention when we initiated the project was not to burden members with any financial support because Conference Office had adequately planned for the project and built some reserve funds to execute it. Although the cashflow of the Church indicated a positive outlay, circumstances changed as a result of the pandemic and its associated economic pressures when the project took off, and these compelled us to go for a bank loan to continue with this faith work.
People of God, we are grateful for Conference decision to support the repayment of the loan with the introduction of the 6% of specified incomes under the Percentage Revenue Mobilization System (PRMS) with effect from January 1, 2023. However, subsequent interest rate hikes in the economy rendered the proceeds from the 6% of incomes woefully inadequate to meet our repayment obligations to our bankers. Upon the advice of our internal Project Team, it became absolutely necessary for us to seek alternative financing arrangements to enable us to settle the loan and other contractual obligations by the end of the year. In this way, the Church will not be saddled with huge interest costs that would be involved in paying off the loan over the contracted duration of six years.
The recommended strategy approved by the Registered Trustees is not to directly request Societies for financial support but rather to embark on targeted financial solicitation or support from identified willing members of the various societies across the Methodist Connexion who can assist the church in this endeavour. This initiative, already accepted by the entire leadership of the Church, proposes a bail-out by the people called Methodists who are the owners of the Wesley Towers property.
The launch of the Wesley Towers Funding is the official opening of the special efforts we are deploying to pay off our obligations to the bank and the contractors, which currently stand at One Hundred and twenty-two million Ghana cedis (GHS122 million). This is necessary to free resources for the development of other essential projects in our 22 dioceses, which include chapels and manses. The sheer size of the obligations may appear frightening but as our Lord said to the disciples, “if you have faith as little as a mustard seed, you shall say unto this mountain, be moved out of this place, and it shall move; and nothing shall be impossible to you” Matthew 17:20. In like manner, if we, the people called Methodists apply ourselves to it, we can also move the mountain of GHS 122 million out of our books, and it shall be accomplished.
We therefore appeal to all of you, Methodists and friends who are worshipping in our various chapels, to step out by faith and support this special fund-raising effort and also willingly pick up pledge forms, if you have not done that already, and be part of the contributors to the scheme in the next six (6) months up to December 31, 2023.
In this regard, contributors may wish to donate as follows:
GH¢ 1,000.00 monthly or one-time payment of GH¢ 6,000.00
GH¢ 500.00 monthly or one-time payment of GH¢ 3,000.00.
GH¢ 200.00 monthly or one-time payment of GH¢ 1,200.00.
Any amount that individuals can afford
Big Donors will be duly honoured with various awards in the Hall of Fame Monument that will be mounted at the Towers Site under the following categories:
Above GH¢ 50,000.00 - Platinum Contributors
GH¢ 21,000.00 to GH¢ 50,000.00 - Gold Contributors
GH¢ 10,000.00 to GH¢ 20,000.00 - Silver Contributors
Looking back at what the Lord has done thus far, we can agree with the hymnist and say: “We will praise God for what is past and trust Him for what is to come”. We entreat all people called Methodists to stand up to be counted and respond positively to the clarion call to give and give towards this worthy cause and may the coordinators do well to remit the donations that come in into the designated bank accounts on a timely basis to meet the project objectives.
May the Lord bless you all and make our church great and ready for his work.
I hereby declare the Wesley Towers Financing Scheme as proposed, duly launched.
Gyedzi nyi twer no, twer n’ara ko ewiei!
The Most Reverend Dr. Paul Kwabena Boafo