Emmanuel Abu Kissi

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Emmanuel Abu Kissi is a medical doctor and founder of a medical clinic in Accra, Ghana, and manager of a hospital he renamed Deseret Hospital. He is a leader in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Kissi was born in 1938 in Abomosu, Ghana. He completed his medical training in surgery in England. While in London, he converted to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in February 1979, a few months after the Church lifted the restriction of priesthood ordination on black men.

Soon after President Spencer W. Kimball announced the revelation in 1978 extending the priesthood to all worthy male members of the Church, senior missionary couples arrived in Ghana, and within a year 400 people were baptized.

After Kissi returned to Ghana from England in 1979, he was a professor at Legon University medical school and worked as a general surgeon at Korle Bu Hospital. The first other Latter-day Saint he met in Ghana was Priscilla Sampson-Davis, who was reading the Doctrine and Covenants while waiting for treatment at the hospital. He was surprised to learn that approximately 1,700 members of the Church lived in the nation. On May 4, 1980, a small Latter-day Saint congregation was officially organized in Accra, Ghana, and Kissi was sustained to lead the group as its first branch president. Dr. Kissi soon presided over several congregations, first as district president in 1982 and then as a counselor in the mission presidency in 1983.

In June 1989, the Ghanaian government instituted an 18-month "Freeze," forcing all Church activities to cease. The government of Ghana announced that all church meetings were illegal and expelled all foreign missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ (and other denominations). Church buildings were desecrated and the government confiscated and sold at auction chickens grown on Church farms. Kissi was called as president of the Ghana Accra Mission for the Church and served from 1989 to 1991. He directed families to worship at home with their families while the freeze was in effect.

After the freeze was lifted, Kissi was called as the first General Authority from Ghana and served as a Regional Representative from 1991 to 1998. The number of stakes multiplied, and after then-Church president Gordon B. Hinckley announced that a temple would be built in Ghana, Kissi assisted with translation of the temple ceremonies into two Ghanaian languages. He was serving as patriarch of the Accra Ghana Lartebiokorshie Stake prior to being called as an Area Seventy, where he served from 2002 to 2007.

Kissi and his wife, Elizabeth, who is a nurse, are the parents of seven children.

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