The Most Rev Dominic Kodwo Andoh, Archbishop of Emeritus of the Catholic Archdiocese of Accra, died at the Cardiothoracic Centre of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, Accra on Friday.
His death, which came barely two weeks after celebrating his 84th birthday on May 4, has shocked the entire Catholic fraternity in the country.
Sources close to the Cardiothoracic Centre told the Ghanaian Times that the late Archbishop Andoh died at about 7:50pm, 12 days after being admitted for heart-related ailment.
His body has been deposited at the mortuary of the hospital for autopsy.
The Catholic Archbishop of Accra, the Most Rev Gabriel Palmer Buckle, some bishops and family members had visited the hospital to pray for the late Archbishop.
The President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference, the Most Rev Joseph Osei-Bonsu described the late Archbishop Andoh as ‘simple, unassuming, caring and pastorally-minded’.
“We would miss him because he was a good shepherd of the Catholic Church. His death is a loss to the church,” he told the Ghanaian Times on phone.
The Managing Editor of the Catholic Standard, Mr Isaac Fritz Andoh, also described him as a great man who related well to both the young and the old.
Mrs Cecilia Lemaire, an elder sister of the late Archbishop Andoh said he was humble, peaceful and always listened to people.
She said his death was a shock to the family and the church. She said: “we had a chat with him for more than an hour on Friday. We were happy about his condition only to be told some minutes later that he was dead” she told the Ghanaian Times.
Archbishop Andoh, the third child of the late Francis and Mary Andoh of Elmina, was born on May 4, 1929 at Shama in the Western Region. He had both his minor and major seminary formation at Amisano in the Central Region.
On December 23, 1956, Dominic Kodwo Andoh, was ordained Priest by the Right Rev. J.O. Bowers, SVD, Bishop of Accra, at the altar of the uncompleted Holy Spirit Cathedral. After his ordination, Rev Father Andoh started his pastoral work as an Assistant Pastor at the Koforidua St. George’s Church (now a cathedral).
Father Andoh was not only the first priest to be ordained in the Holy Spirit Cathedral but also on October 3, 1971, the first to be consecrated Bishop, and again the first Ghanaian bishop of the Accra Diocese.
He went on to score another first when on July 25, 1993, he was enthroned the first Archbishop of the new Archdiocese of Accra. His motto, “Thy Kingdom come,” tells his story; love for and devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
After 34 years of shepherding Accra, Archbishop Andoh retired in March, 2005. And the beauty of it all is that he was succeeded by his own ‘son’ whom he formed and ordained as a Priest, who was later appointed the first Bishop of Koforidua Diocese, Most Rev Gabriel Charles Palmer-Buckle.
Archbishop Palmer-Buckle, succeeded Archbishop Emeritus Andoh, upon his appointment by the late Pope John Paul ll on March 30, 2005.