In 2008 our congregation set up a twinning link to Azire Presbyterian Church in Bamenda, Cameroon. A lively exchange of letters and photos has ensued and members of the ECC Bochum have visited our partners in Bamenda on several occasions
From initial roots in the Basel Mission around 1905, the Azire Presbyterian Church congregation in Bamenda initially grew very slowly. – By 1949 church services were still attracting only a very few worshippers (as few as 5 or only a few tens) and were held in a small grass roofed house. However, there was massive growth around 1970 and the number of Christians rose dramatically from 178 in 1968 to 1,300 by 1972. Immense growth still continues, and on 24 August 2008, 30 infants and 29 adults were baptised and 37 adults confirmed at P.C. Azire. In a letter sent from Cameroon in 2008, our partners wrote of themselves: “Our congregation is one of the largest congregations of the Presbyterian Church in Cameroon (P.C.C.).
Azire congregation is pastored by two pastors – the Rev. Nsai Godlove (Parish Pastor) and the Rev. Darah Charles (associate pastor). We have 26 Church elders, a nursery and primary school with close to 40 teachers.
Our registered number of Communicants as at 31st December 2007 was above 4000. Our Sunday school attendance each Sunday in the two services is always between 1200 -–1600 children. To accommodate these children condusively, we have started a Sunday school multi-purpose hall.” The congregation’s eight choirs are Trinity Choir, Bethel Choir, New Zion Choir, Macedonia Choir, Calvary Praise Singers, Halleluya Choir, Temple Singers Choir, and Le Messager de Dieu Choir. The church also has a congregational registered group of people living with HIV/AIDS called “Hope Support Group” with close to sixty registered members. There is also a handicapped group and a registered “Faith foundation group for widows, widowers, orphans and the needy”. Although only recently established, this exchange is already developing very well, and we are now able to put faces to our partners in Africa thanks to the photos which have been sent. Thank-you, Azire P.C.