It is that time of the year where there is the fight for many souls to keep vigil for the New Year.
On this occasion radio and television stations are overwhelmed with jingles and adverts from many churches and the country is flooded with posters and fliers from many churches calling for many souls to join in worship and observe the coming year. In this piece yen.com.gh recounts the interesting story and changes surrounding watch night vigil in Ghana.
Crossover or watch night service or watch night vigil is the Ghanaian name for a service usually held on the last day in December to usher in the New Year. Although the meaning of “Crossover” and watch night vigil in the dictionary is not close to the meaning of the corrupted name “Crossover”, that we have chosen for the service, where many Christians pray and stay vigil to see the dawn of a new day, it still has vigil embedded in there, where vigil means a period of purposeful sleeplessness, an occasion for devotional watching, or an observance.
In Ghana especially, this is a major celebration in the calendar of the Christian.it is herald with great sermons, huge billboards, adverts both on radio and television. From the normal service which was observed by many, there is more competition now as some top churches have decided to take the service a notch higher.
With the advancement of technology, the vigil has been taken a step higher. Now, emphasis is much more on how many souls one can be won for the Kingdom of God, hence getting bigger venues to accommodate many souls.
It is on record that many who never step into church the whole year find themselves in church on the 31 of December to observe the vigil, hence the need to get bigger locations.
About a year ago, the watch night service was characterized with branding of buses and huge billboards. Added to this were radio and television interviews inviting many to join in the vigil. Much attention was also added to the aesthetics of pictures for the billboard and oh the vigil would not sell without a guest artiste being a top notch gospel musician to attract the souls. In essence evangelism taken to another level.
One interesting thing that characterizes the yearly watch night vigil is the various names chosen by various churches for their services. Barely three years ago, there was almost a feud between two distinct and great churches in Ghana over venue and use of name, which almost landed in a law suit. This alone should give one an idea of how much emphasis is placed on preparing for the watch night vigil.
In the past two years or less, many churches have moved from names like 31 watch night vigil to interesting names like Crossover, Passover , Flying over, Prophetic 31 night, Shagnoff 2016, Kairos Crossover, Restoration Night, Cross over to take over, recover before you cross over, fly over to 2016, night of signs and wonders and double anointing crossover.
These names though interesting, are all catchy to attract more souls on that night. It is also a night for many to put their new years’ resolution in perspective. With just a day to observe the vigil, whether you find yourself crossing over or flying over, taking over or restoring all you have lost, remember that we are welcoming a New Year, a year where you decide to put all the past behind you and brace yourself to face what the New Year has for you.