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During one of the Church Conferences in Virginia on September 6th 1999, a group of women, headed by Mrs. Susana Barning had an idea that the women’s fellowship groups in the various Ghanaian Presbyterian Churches in America and Canada can come together and form a National Group. The main idea was to have unity among the groups, and make them stronger and more effective in doing the work of God. Letters were sent to all the groups and they all agreed to have a National Fellowship.
The Inauguration of the National Fellowship Group took place in September 2000 in Toronto and was led by Rev. Paulina Dankwa. The theme was ‘Let Your Light Shine’. Soon after the meeting in Toronto, Rev. Dankwa helped to officially inaugurate the local Fellowship group in Virginia. The first Anniversary for the National Group was held in Virginia on July 21st and 22nd 2001. Annual Conferences have been held since then, usually using a theme from Ghana and always with powerful Guest Speakers. Annual Conferences are hosted by one of the groups selected at the preceding year’s Conference. The newly inaugurated groups are usually given a couple of years before they are asked to host an Annual Conference.
The Constitution for the parent group in Ghana was also adapted for this group (GPWF/NA). Our Greetings, Motto, Aims and Objectives are the same as those of the Presbyterian Women’s Fellowship in Ghana.
The following women were influential in the establishment of the National Fellowship; Mrs. Susana Barning, Mrs. Pepertual Nkansah, and Mrs. Akonoh. The first executive members were all selected from Toronto with Mrs. Susana Barning as the first President. This group handed over to the next executive during the Annual Conference in Brooklyn in the year 2003. Virginia was made the seat of Government for the second executive, with Mrs. Tina Abban as the President. The term of the second national executive ended in September 2007 in Toronto when the third national executive was elected. Unlike the previous two executives, members of the third executive were selected from all the groups based on general election. Dr Margaret Safo was elected as National President for the current or third executive.
Since its inception, many Fellowship groups have been added. These include; Brooklyn, Bronx, Maryland, Montreal, Ohio, Philadelphia, and Houston. Currently, there are nine groups that form the Ghanaian Presbyterian Women’s Fellowship of North America.
We pray and hope that as we move forward we will be more united and strong in the Lord. In so doing we will be able to fulfill the aspirations of the founding members of the Group, to keep the light shining and bring more women to join the groups for the work of the Lord.