Catholic Bishops say bride price is becoming too expensive

By Kwabena Owusu-Ampratwum

President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference (GCBC) and Archbishop of Tamale Most Reverend Philip Naameh, has observed the expense of marrying “properly” according to traditional rules had become expensive for the average man seeking the hand of a woman in marriage.

This is because the concept of bride price in the country had been taken out of its original traditional context and becoming increasingly monetized.

Archbishop Naameh made the observation at the opening of this year’s plenary assembly of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference in Ho on the theme, “Integral Pastoral Care for the Family in the light of Amoris Laetitia.”

He said coupled with that, was the confusion surrounding the ceremony of traditional marriage, which “properly subsists” in the exchange of gifts in ceremonial meetings of the parties and their extended families, now known as engagement, occasioning duplication of rites and costs.

Archbishop Naameh said the practice was distorting the relationship between the character of traditional and church marriage and called for an “inculturation of Christian marriage in the Ghanaian church to preserve a more reflected convention of culture and faith.”

He called on government to partner the church to provide affordable housing packages to young couples, especially families with disabled children to keep peace, unity and love in the family and charged churches to show love to homosexual unions.

Archbishop Naameh said though individuals engaged in such marriages which did not satisfy God’s intention of creating man and woman, they could not be deprived of God’s love.