Members of St. James’ Episcopal Church, Mt. Vernon and Holy Trinity Methodist Church, Ghana shared a joint celebration this past Sunday, July 12. The service featured the Holy Trinity Choir and Father B. Kris Kramer, the priest of St. James’ who preached a sermon reflecting on truth, civil rights, slavery, and the blessings of diversity and love within the body of Christ. The loose offering from the Sunday service was dedicated to be used to support a small primary school in Krofu, Ghana. The vacation Bible school program throughout the week was also collecting school supplies for this small rural school which are to be hand delivered in August. The service was followed by a West African feast with authentic dishes, right down to the bottled Fanta.
The Rev. John Hammond and his members moved their services to St. James at the beginning of this year. Hammond and Kramer have become good friends and begun sharing ministry. When Hammond learned of the impending visit of the President of the United States to Ghana he suggested to the leadership of St. James that his congregation prepare a West African feast to follow a joint service on the same weekend. People in Ghana were certainly in celebratory spirits last week and that spirit of jubilation spilled into the aisles of St. James as the choir and children danced around the church with Kramer and Hammond at the end of the service with drums playing.
An authentic flavor of Africa in the form of Holy Trinity Methodist, Ghana continues to be a fixture in the life of this small church on Old Mill Road. They worship each Sunday at 12:30 p.m. at St. James Episcopal Church at 5614 Old Mill Road after St. James’ 10:15 a.m. main service. The public is invited to come and join in the dance of this new "beat" in Mt. Vernon.