Helping African Youth Develop a Spiritual Foundation

Offering religious and values education to young people in Ghana is one of hundreds of ways in which Medical Mission Sisters and our Associates around the world try to be a healing presence to others today.

Shortly after she made her First Communion in 1994, Sister Rita Amponsaa-Owusu, who is from Ghana, joined the Tarcisians of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, a group devoted to the Sacred Heart through Saint Tarcisius. The experience had such a positive influence in her life that now, as a Medical Mission Sister, she has begun a group herself in Bamiri, a small village outside Techiman, Ghana. The group is flourishing.

“The group seeks to provide a space where children are informed on various issues of life, so they get the chance to make informed decisions rather than succumbing to negative peer pressure. They are taught the Gospel values, and prayer and study of scripture are central to all we do,” Sister Rita explains. The children have an opportunity to be part of organized events – sports, quiz competitions, retreats, and inter parish, diocesan and national programs.

Children and young adults from primary school to senior high school can become members of the group. Many of the young people are from poor families. Sister Rita says, “In effect, the group empowers the members for life…to become responsible and make meaning out of life, in spite of hardships and other challenging situations.”

Sister Rita is fully involved with the group, and other Medical Mission Sisters visit from time to time to give talks, and to encourage the youth. Leaders have been chosen from among the members, and are being trained. Seeing the success of the group, the Techiman Diocese hopes to establish it in other parishes as well.

April 15, 2012