What makes him great, what truly separates him from others- is that he is the same man about whom everyone would tell you pretty much the same good thing. His level of humility is startling; the warmth around him is soothing; similarly, his definition of philanthropy/fellow-feeling is comforting.
Sometimes you are left wondering how God could deposit this set of qualities in one man.
He is generous to a fault. What is more amazing? He is not just as skilled a preacher and motivational speaker on the microphone, (as he is an accountant on the balance sheet), but also a charismatic and consummate soul-winner (and an evangelist), one who would “do all things just to win some for Christ”.
Like the Titan, he possesses this uncommon will power that has made him sprout and grow (from where others withered) into the huge potential he is today.
We caught up with Rev. Christian Baah Nartey (CBN) to tell us about how he managed his way out from the small community of Somanya-Abokobi and blossomed into the charming, young and promising minister, a name on the lips of many.
Birth and early life
When on Monday July 23, 1979 a shrill voice came piercing through the rather quiet neighborhood of Somanya-Abokobi (a lesser known Abokobi), it was that of a baby boy who came to be known as Christian Baah Nartey
The good news about the birth of this cute baby boy was soon to saturate the area, lighting the hearts of both parents with unimaginable joy.
Days quickly rolled into weeks and subsequently into months and soon baby Chris was up on his feet taking bold steps (a clear demonstration of his innate boldness that has brought him this far), giving his parents the signal that he was set for life’s journey.
His next home was the Ahamedia Primary School where he first had the taste of formal education and from where he learned, among others, to string words into the immaculate English he writes and speaks now.
He displayed academic brilliance right from the onset, from Ahamedia, through the Sra Presby Junior Secondary School (JSS), Somanya and latter the Yilo Krobo Senior High School, also in Somanya where he read business accounting, leaving behind exemplary academic records.
Further steps up the academic ladder (Tertiary Education)
Propelled by his thirst for higher education, young Chris Baah Nartey headed for the Koforidua Polytechnic in 1999 and studied Accounting for his High National Diploma (certificate), ‘munching’ any literature (book) on accounting within reach. He eventually graduated in 2002 after three years.
The making of a pastor
Building on his solid Christian upbringing and a long time ambition, he heeded the call for a more dedicated and, if you like, greater service in the Lord’s vineyard.
He thus proceeded in 2006 to the Trinity Theological Seminary for formal training in that regard. After one-year study/studies, he was awarded “Certificate in Ministry” with a special offer, an exemption, to read for his first degree within 3 years instead of the usual 4 years. This was largely due to his sterling performance in the certificate course.
In 2010, he graduated with a First Degree from the seminary and as one of the nine who pulled a 1st class from a batch of over 70 seminarians/graduands. How else could he have justified the confidence reposed in him?
Last year, Rev Chris was recommended by the Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana (PCG) and awarded a scholarship by the Union Presbyterian Seminary, the USA from where he’d been studying until early this month when he graduated with Masters in New Testament Studies. The scholarship is awarded once in every two years to one young, high-performing minister of the PCG.
Soul winning in practice
When the time came for practical soul winning (after graduation), he was posted on probation to his home presbytery, Dangme-Tongu, one of the 16 Presbyteries into which the Presbyterian Church of Ghana has been divided, and put in charge of a relatively young congregation- Hebron Presby at Nuaso, Odumase-Krobo- to nurture and grow in all aspects.
Very few of his type and orientation/training (as ministers who play in the orthodox space) have the skill and, if you like the will-power, as he does, to locate and walk the middle ground between orthodox and charismatic worship.
His is a bouquet of flavors; he has learned to blend different flavors in his worship and ministry to appeal to both the young and old alike. What is more striking is that, while doing this, he still has his own way of dishing out to the typical Presbyterians a good dose of the conservative taste they yearn to have. That is yet another area in which he stands distinguished.
His background in accounting made him the obvious choice for the position of a Finance Director of the Presbytery, a position that hitherto was more of a preserve of senior ministers. Once again, he fitted perfectly into this role, seamlessly combining it with the rather demanding task of raising a congregation up onto its feet.
Under his auspices as the minister in charge, the Hebron congregation grew in numbers and standing, taking up an enviable position in the comity of congregations in the presbytery. This came with a corresponding level of infrastructural development. The chapel was painted and furnished under his watch. A new, multi-purpose mission house/office complex also sprung up; the first floor has since been furnished and commissioned.
Between 2010 and 2016, he turned the church into a well-known hub for spiritual growth, hinged on innovative programmes such as the Annual PrayerFest and what he named Jericho Blast, a seven-day personal encounter with the Lord.
Other bespoke and segment-specific programmes initiated and ran by him include the “Singles Prayer Summit” which has been running since 2013; “Men’s Power Summit” as well as “Winning Women” both of which have been on the rail since 2014.
Interestingly, he didn’t confine his ministry to the four corners of his chapel neither did he remain a blessing to only Presbyterians. He’s spread his tentacle to cover other denominations including the Church of Pentecost, the Methodist Church, etc. where he is often billed to feature.
For four years, he’s also been on the air (on Rite FM, a Somanya-based radio station), using radio as a medium to reach out to more and more people.
Giving back to society
In the Dangme speaking areas, in particular, the name CBN has come to be associated with generosity. Most people- the young and old alike- who one way or the other, have crossed path with him have “seen something of themselves”. He’s washed off his blessings to stream into and change their lives.
Within this rather short period of six years of ministry, he’s spearheaded a sponsorship drive to support about ten youngsters of the church to acquired tertiary education, with a similar number going into trade and business.
His “Widows and Orphans Welfare Project” is fledging; thanks to this initiative, the smile has been restored on the faces of some widows and orphans in his neighborhood, including the children in the Nectar Home Orphanage at Nuaso, Odumase-Krobo.
Rev. Chris is the fourth of five children born to Mr. Emmanuel Kwesi Nartey, a retired civil servant and Mrs. Comfort Ami Nartey, a trader (now deceased) and is the older of the two males, preceded by three females. He is married to Mrs. Mabel Ayermle Nartey with whom he has four adorable girls.
The return of CBN
He returns to post better trained, more experience and fired up to do more exploits; we can only expect him to set the place ablaze once more.