Project Documents

Date of Award

1990

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Benjamin D. Schoun

Second Advisor

Steven P. Vitrano

Third Advisor

Russell L. Staples

Abstract

Since Ghana gained independence from colonial rule, religious broadcasting has undergone self- and governmental censorship. Post-independence governments have either clamped down on the activities of church organizations by disagreeing with them or have intimidated them in numerous ways to tone down some aspects of their activities that the government considers unacceptable. In recent times, both individual Ghanaians and government functionaries, especially, have looked at the Christian church with suspicion and skepticism. Many of them consider the Christian message, at least in the way it is presented, out of touch with, and irrelevant to the everyday needs and realities of the Ghanaian society. This criticism is justified in part in the Adventist attempt at radio evangelism in Ghana. For example, in the 1960s, the Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) church began airing the American Voice of Prophecy radio broadcast in Ghana. This broadcast was used verbatim, just as it was first broadcast on American radio. Many of the examples and the illustrations used in the broadcast were alien to the Ghanaian public. The messages were good, but the illustrations were so irrelevant and foreign that they obviously colored the understanding of the message. This project develops an approach to a Seventh-day Adventist radio evangelism in Ghana. It does this first, by developing a theological perspective as explained in Paul's philosophy of Christian service: "by all means to save some" (1 Cor 9:22). Secondly, by using the great gospel commission of Jesus Christ in Matt 29:16-20, which forms the basis for all Christian communication and witness. Relating the biblical concept and the contemporary situation points to a religious radio ministry that is both cross-cultural and cross-religious. The message will be shaped to reach directly to the hearts of all human beings irrespective of their religious affiliation. In addition, the study suggests that evangelism must be done by means of innovative holistic ways of presenting the gospel message, in a participatory and practical format. These practical approaches respond to the revolutionary, ideological situation in Ghanaian society, and reflect felt needs and problems that will assist the government in its economic and moral revolution. Reviewing current methodologies in radio programming, the project develops program scripts for pilot programs under four selected formats: the teaching-preaching, talk show/commentary, radio spot, and the religious news and commentary. These program scripts are aimed at presenting the gospel through teaching, and discussion, to show the government and people of Ghana that the Christian church is committed to addressing social issues to bring about change.

Subject Area

Radio in religion--Ghana--Seventh-day Adventists

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