Consecration in Gambia – June 2023

In mid-June, Doug Ingram, our Chief Operating Officer, visited the Anglican Diocese of the Gambia. The purpose of his trip was two-fold: to attend the Mount Zion Training Centre Board Meeting and to witness the Consecration and Enthronement of the new Bishop of the Gambia, The Rt Rev. St. Obed Arist Kojo Baiden.

The Gambia is a small West African country with a population of approximately 2.5 million people, with a diverse cultural heritage. While Islam is the predominant religion, Christianity has a notable presence. Within the Christian community, which comprises about 4% of the population, the Anglican Church holds a significant position.

Mount Zion Training Centre Board Meeting

The Mount Zion Training Centre is a practical ministry training facility being established by the Internal Province of West Africa in collaboration with the Relay Trust in Freetown, Sierra Leone. This centre aims to provide support to existing clergy, train new clergy, serve as a retreat centre, and act as a hub for distance learning courses across the Province.

During the board meeting, several significant decisions were made. Mount Zion was officially recognised as a legal entity in Sierra Leone, and the Chairman of the Board, The Rt Rev Thomas Wilson, the Bishop of Freetown, was elected. Furthermore, it was confirmed that the institution would open its doors to students in November 2023.

Consecration and Enthronement

Following the meeting, Doug had the privilege of exploring some of The Gambia’s sights. He also had the opportunity to meet with all the diocesan bishops from the Internal Province of West Africa to discuss future plans, with a particular focus on evangelism and discipleship training throughout the Province.  Doug and the bishops were also invited to dinner at the British High Commissioner’s residence, fostering further connections.

The pinnacle of the visit was the Consecration and Enthronement of the Bishop of the Gambia, which spanned two days. Led by the Most Rev Dr Cyril Kobina Ben-Smith, Primate of the Church of the Province of West Africa, and the Most Rev Jacques Boston, Archbishop of the Internal Province of West Africa, the ceremonies were a magnificent celebration, blending traditional Anglicanism with an unmistakable Gambian flair.

The visit was hugely successful and it was a pleasure for Doug to spend time deepening the Trust’s already strong relationship with the Internal Province of West Africa while witnessing the consecration of their newest bishop.  We are grateful for the opportunity to continue our collaboration with the Province and request prayers for the ministry of Bishop Obed and the church in the Gambia. Additionally, please pray for the entire Internal Province of West Africa, that the Good News may be proclaimed and disciples made throughout the region.