June 7, 2016
Driving through Ghana’s Ashanti region, you quickly notice there are possibly as many churches as gas stations. Given the country’s 71% Christian population, it is not so surprising. What is surprising, however, is the names of the small-to-medium sized stores and businesses which dot the landscape: almost all of them have Christian-inspired names. “The Answering God Enterprise,” “Christ the Almighty Plumbing,” “Psalm 23 Catering,” and “Thank You Jesus Hardware.”
…So why do so many businesses have biblical names? “Because we believe in God!” smiles Matilda, a local journalist. “The store names are often a way to tell the faith of the business owners, and in some parts of Kumasi where there are lots of Muslims, you will find ‘Allah’ in the name of their stores as well.”
…The peculiar business naming technique is tied to the proliferation of churches in Ghana. A report pegged the number of “faith-based groups claiming allegiance to Christianity” at 10,000 in 2014. As many of these churches have multiple branches, the number of individual church buildings is likely to be much higher.