Going from Ghana to Loving Liberia


Pastor-Gyamfi.png.opt311x311o0,0s311x311Over the next three days we will profile Emmanuel Gyamfi, who is the Director of Liberian Operations. Pastor Gyamfi has shown himself to be a faithful steward and an exceptional partner. We hope you begin to get to know this amazing man and his life mission over the next few days.

What was your childhood and life in Ghana like?

Pastor Gyamfi: I was born into the union of Kwabema Gyamfi and Mary Adu Gyamfi in 1964. I lost both of my parents when I was very young. I did have an older brother, but he was also struggling and he couldn’t take care of me, so an Aunty brought me up.

I began my education in 1972 by attending a Presbyterian school. In 1978/79 I entered a well-respected boarding school for my secondary (Jr. high/high school) education. Due to the absence of my parents though, I didn’t have the money to continue my studies there and I had to leave the school dormitory and move back to Berekum to stay at my Aunt’s Residence.

In 1984, I completed my secondary education but  there was no means for me to go to college. I became extremely sorrowful especially when I saw my friends improving their lives and entering colleges. Sometimes I thought to myself, “if only my parents were still alive, I wouldn’t be going through all this.”

How did you come to Liberia then?

Pastor Gyamfi: Based on the circumstances surrounding my life, I found it very hard to stay in Ghana. Every time I think back on my days in Ghana, I grieve a little. So, I thought it would be wise to take a journey to another land, to have peace of mind. I came to Liberia in 1985.

Ghana-grungeWhen did you and your wife Ruth meet?

Pastor Gyamfi: When I came to Liberia I joined a church named Grace Pentecostal Church. Ruth was a member of that church and she was also a member of the choir. I was the Choir Director. I saw her good will, care and concern towards others and me. Sometimes she even provided food for me.  There was no doubt she was the right person for me. That was how we met in 1988.

How did the civil war affect you, your family and the Liberian people?

Pastor Gyamfi: In 1989 the Liberian Civil War began. We thought that it wasn’t going to last long. We thought it would end soon. But we were very wrong. The war lasted longer than any of us thought possible. During this time we were robbed of everything we ever had, in terms of our “material possessions”.

Liberian-warAs the war became more terrifying, living in our community was no longer safe so we had to leave. I saw friends die. Anyone could die at any moment. Even dogs had more value than humans at that time. I had never experienced something so terrible.

I couldn’t believe that humans could be so mean and cruel. I saw parents abandon their kids. There were times where we had to jump over dead bodies or run from one direction to another with bullets flying over our head. It was really a terrible time.

(Be sure to check back tomorrow to read part II of this profile)

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