If you ask the Tandoh family members how they were able to leave Ghana, Africa, and come to the United States, there is but one answer: “God is good.” It was also a father’s love, dedication, hard work, prayer, and faith that brought his family here. Miraculously, it was a faithfulness that went both ways.
In a dream, Michael Tandoh, Sr., was urged by God to come to the United States, to be blessed. By putting his faith into action, he came to America on December 24, 1994, with hope and prayers that God would provide a way for his family–wife Rose and five children–to also join him one day. Abiding in faith and maintaining a father’s heart to provide for his family helped pave the way to turn this prayer into a reality.
“He (Michael Tandoh, Sr.) was a truck driver, and in his time here he basically worked himself to death to bring the rest of us here,” said daughter Deborah. “The main reason he wanted to bring us was for us to have a better life and to get a better education.”
After four long years, Michael was able to bring his three daughters, Lucia, Jacinta, and Deborah, along with their mother, Rose, to the United States. One year later, the family was blessed with an American-born son named Michael, Jr. Finally, on August 20, 2002, Michael, Sr., was able to bring his boys, Francis and Godson, to the United States.
The most challenging part was behind the Tandoh family members once they were all united again in America. However, the struggles of adjusting to American culture while trying to learn the English language were at hand. To help ease this transition was a pastor who, with open arms, welcomed the Tandoh family to his church. The family now refers to Pastor Lou Falcone, from the Christian Assembly of God church, in Wilkes-Barre, as “family.”
“God is good and if you continue to walk with Him, He does wonders,” Deborah said. “If it were not for God, our family would not be where we are today, and we just thank God every day for everything.”
In celebration of God’s blessing, the Tandohs felt fortunate to open a business, God is Good Market, in August of 2009. Located in Kingston, it serves many international families.
“Because of faith and trust in God, I moved to the United States. Because God is an honorable and faithful God, we are receiving all of the promises that He promised in the dream. That is why we named our store God is Good,” said Michael, Sr.
Michael, Sr., and Rose felt that it would be more convenient for other African people, Caribbean people, and people from diverse nationalities to have a small market nearby in which they can buy foreign supplies instead of having to travel to places like New York and New Jersey to buy international food and merchandise. The market sells a variety of items including clothing, jewelry, and African food.
After living in the United States for more than 10 years, the Tandoh family is well adjusted and continues to put its faith in God.
“As a family, we never make any decisions without consulting God,” said Michael, Sr. “When it comes to culture, we believe in most of our African culture, but also leave room for learning the American culture as we go along. We go through some issues and trials, but all in all, God is still good to us.”
In April of 2009, Michael and Rose began to invite other friends from Ghana to join them at their home to worship and celebrate God, Ghana style. Every Saturday they would unite in the large room in their basement to sing, dance, and share testimonies of what God has been doing in their lives.
The gathering has grown and is no longer limited to just people from Ghana; they meet every Sunday morning at 10 a.m. at the King David Hall, on Tioga Ave., in Kingston.
Petra Plucenik who attends regularly said, “The energy and enthusiasm I feel in these church meetings is contagious, never before have I seen such a group of humble and passionate people, I love them and feel like I’ve learned so much from them.”
“God is Good” is not just the name of their market, it is the theme of everything they do, and it comes across loud and clear.