The Church of Pentecost has its roots with two major classical Pentecostal churches, Christ Apostolic and the Apostolic Church of Ghana. The history is traced to the Pentecostal fellowship which emerged at Asamankese and Akroso. The first was started by Peter Newman Anim at a Annum Asamankese in 1917 and the order by James Kweku Gyimah of Akroso.
Anim received a magazine called Sword of the Spirit published by the Faith Tabernacle Church in Philadelphia USA. He dedicated himself to the teachings of the magazine and as a result received healing of a chronic stomach ailment and Guinea worm infections based on his new found faith, he left his first church, the Presbyterian Church to establish Faith Tabernacle Church which was affiliated with faith Tabernacle church the USA.
He won new converts through his evangelistic outreach and by 1925 branches of his new church had been established at Pepeadze and Abura, Oboasi in Central Region, Bibiane in Western Region as well as Atonsu, Sekyere and Banko in the Ashanti region.
in 1926, Anim read about the Holy Spirit in another magazine published by the Apostolic Faith Mission in America the message in this magazine centered on vital truths of Christianity such as forgiveness and salvation from sin divine healing the personality and the fulfillment of the Holy Spirit and the pre-millennium coming of Christ. With time, the Faith Tabernacle church in the USA realized that Anim had developed a passionate interest in the Teachings and workings of the Holy Spirit which contradicted their teachings and hence, severed links with him. Anim later learned that the leader of the Faith Tabernacle church in Nigeria was also expelled from the Faith Tabernacle fellowship for the same reason. Undoubtedly Anim decided to name his church the Apostolic Faith.
In 1931, Anim and two of his converts traveled to fellowship with the Apostolic Faith church in Nigeria and to meet the British Apostolic team that had visited Nigeria for a Holy Spirit revival meeting. They witnessed the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at the meetings and on his return, he organized long prayers and preached on the Holy Spirit, yet none of the members of his congregation received the baptism in the Holy Spirit. In 1932 however, a member of the church Stephen Wiredu received the baptism in the Holy Spirit in a village near Asamankese called Brekumanso while praying for his child who was not feeling well.
Revival meetings were subsequently organized in August and September 1932 where all the members of the church who had been longing for the baptism of the holy spirit received him with the evidence of speaking in tongues and prophecies. news about this move of the holy spirit and the new Pentecostal experience spread quickly to parts of the country and many believers walked a long distance to Asamankese to be baptized in the Holy Spirit. those who receive the baptism through the revival meetings went back to their towns and villages empowered to preach the gospel to others.
A second Christian Fellowship started almost a year before this incident through James Kweku Gyimah of the Presbyterian church at Akroso. She also received the baptism in the Holy Spirit through a similar magazine published by the Apostolic Church USA. since his baptism in the Holy Spirit was not accepted by his Presbyterian Church he left to preach Christ on his own on the streets of Accra so though he was considered a lunatic because of the outward manifestations of his experience is speaking in tongues do kyrgios observers to listen to his messages subsequently he won’t many Souls including some of the leading members of his previous church at across. among those that he wants will s&r Anthony and Joseph Anthony Bempong and their families and Anim’s group and that of James Gyimah occasionally made together for fellowship without necessarily emerging.
in 1935 this new Pentecostal movement at Asamankese was visited by Bradford Apostolic Ministers who were staying in Nigeria. In the team was a missionary George Perfect (an evangelist and prophet from the Apostolic Church Bradford UK) and evangelist Babaloba. The spiritual impact of the visited May the Apostolic Faith church to affiliate with the Bradford denomination best resulted in the change of name to Apostolic Church Gold Coast. It was subsequently ordained into full-time pastoral ministry by George Perfect.
The coming of Reverend James McKeown
In October 1936, the Missionary Secretary of the Apostolic church in Bradford, U.K. Pastor Vivian Wellings, who was then in Nigeria visited the church. Based on his advice they applied to the Apostolic church in the U.K. for a resident missionary. the missionary committee at Bradford and the leadership of the apostolic church at Penney close unanimously and do a prophecy that calls James and Sophia McKeown to missions in a Gold Coast. McKeown hesitated to go to the Gold Coast arguing that he had a for educational background after 15 months of persistence from leadership and his wife to obey the call to Africa. He took a boat from the Liverpool docks in February and arrived in Gold Coast on March 4, 1937. Upon his arrival, he was taken to the headquarters of Apostolic church at Asamankese. His wife, Sophia joined him in September 1937.
The couple adjusted to their new environment ate local food, socialize with the natives and shared accommodation with their landlord Kwabena Anyane who have 3 wives and 26 children. The church members and the community greatly admired the McKoewns for their readiness to adapt to their new environment the Mckeown’s missionary work started with nurturing the assemblies into spirit-filled churches with the intention of becoming the tools for evangelizing the rest of the country. Pastor McKeown trekked on foot and preached in the villages. This led to the establishment of an assembly at Winneba, in addition, today strong evangelistic accessories he also made frequent trips to fellowship with the Akroso group.
Conflict and break up
In May 1937, Pastor McKeown suffered severe malaria and he was kept in his room at Asamankese for days without medication. This was in accordance with the doctrine of divine healing through absolute no medication which was acquired from Faith Tabernacle Church and had become part of the doctrine of the Anim-type Apostolic church in the Gold Coast. They, therefore, expected McKeown to exercise Faith for divine healing.
Meanwhile, the Malaria grew severe and McKeown thought he will die just like the earlier European missionary. restart invented the missionary and reported McKeown’s deteriorating state of the British state to the British district commissioner at Kibi. The Commissioner arranged for McKeown be taken to the European Hospital (now Ridge hospital) in Accra where he was admitted for 10 days. When McKeown recovered he returned to Asamankese and was met by disappointed church leaders for his lack of faith in receiving divine healing from God. the disagreement on the use of medication was so intense that the leadership dissuaded him from preaching the gospel in outlying villages places where they could not keep an eye on him.
At a special presbytery meeting to discuss the issue of divine healing and medical treatment the presbyters were divided. One side insisted that any form of medical treatment include the use of preventive medicine was abominable and like fornication and idolatry constituted a sinful act that required a disciplinary action. The other side which was mostly made up of the Akroso Group argued that there were no references in the Bible to support the claim that medical treatment was sinful.
Among this group were J. K. Gyimah, S. R. Ansomani, C. K. Frimpong and J. K. Bimpong. An already prepared resolution was read to the meeting by the leadership after McKeown had left the meeting, according to the resolution, McKeown’s stand that the Bible did not teach against medication, and his choice to receive medical treatment clearly revealed him to be without faith.
Accordingly the leadership and the entire church could not work as partners with him, though some delegates mostly from across who refused to sign the document the resolution was passed and sent to the Apostolic Church missionary headquarters in Bradford U. K. This meeting ended with a split in the infant church. The missionary and his wife moved to across and remained there for six weeks until June 1938 when they finally settled at winneba making it their missionary base. With this development, the Apostolic Church Gold Coast had two Superintendent and Headquarters. Anim’s group at Asamankese and McKeown’s at Winneba. This became possible since the assemblies at Akros, Gomoa Manso, Akyem Manso and Winneba supported McKeown while those at Asamankese, Abisim, Pepeadze, Asesewa, Sekesua, Juaso and Atonsu supported Annim.
In June 1939 Anim called a meeting of his church at Pepeadze where they adopted the name Christ Apostolic Church as a separate entity from the Apostolic Church Gold Coast.