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Pastor Soaries to Participate in Ghana's Inauguration of the President-Elect, H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
Contact: Brianna Smallwood, First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens, 732-839-2429

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP, N.J., Jan. 5, 2017 /Christian Newswire/ -- FBCLG Senior Pastor DeForest B. Soaries, Jr. is traveling to Ghana, West Africa to participate in Saturday's inauguration ceremonies of The President-Elect, H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo by special invitation of the Republic of Ghana. Soaries also will participate in a thanksgiving service Sunday in Kyebi, H.E. Akufo-Addo's hometown, at the invitation of King of Akyem Abuakwa, His Majesty Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin.

Soaries said of the trip, "It is an unprecedented honor to be invited to the inaugural ceremonies for the next democratically elected President of the Republic of Ghana. In 1957, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. attended the inauguration of independent Ghana's first President, Kwame Nkrumah, because he understood that the political freedom of Africans was inextricably linked to the political freedom of African Americans. Sixty years later, the economic freedom of Africans and African Americans are similarly linked and I am proud to follow King's example by celebrating with the new leadership of Ghana -- which is focused on the economic uplift of the Ghanaian people."

Akufo-Addo was elected as the fifth president of the fourth republic Dec. 9, 2016 and will assume leadership from President John Dramani Mahama. He previously ran for president, also as the New Patriotic Party candidate, in 2012 and 2008. He previously served his nation as its Minister of Foreign Affairs, 2003 to 2007, and Attorney General, 2001 to 2003. He also was elected three times between 1996 and 2008 as Member of Parliament for the Abuakwa South constituency in the Eastern region of Ghana. Akufo-Addo is married to Rebecca Akufo-Addo (née Griffiths-Randolph) and they have five daughters and five grandchildren. His father and uncles are known as some of the founding fathers of Ghana.

Traditionally the swearing-in ceremony takes place in Independence Square in Accra, which is the second largest city square after Tiananmen Square in Beijing, China. This trip marks the seventh Soaries has taken to Ghana, the most recent of which was hosted by H.M. Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin in October 2016. The king, a member of FBCLG while living in the U.S., now reigns over some 2 million people in his territory of Ghana.

Ghana is a nation of 25 million on Africa's western seaboard and is one of the few established, stable democracies in the region. Ghana is one of the world's largest cocoa producers and recently began producing crude oil.

Founded in 1937, First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens is a vibrant community-focused, multi-cultural and historical African-American church rooted in Baptist doctrine. It is located in the Somerset section of Franklin Township, NJ. The church's motto is "Faith in Action." FBCLG bears witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ for spiritual, educational, economic and community transformation.  For more information, visit