Shame on the Jamaica Council of Churches

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

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Dear Editor,

I listened to the news on a particular radio station on January 14, 2019, which stated that the Jamaica Council of Churches is at odds with the Jamaican Government for its recent vote.

Based on my understanding, the governments of Jamaica and several other countries voted not to support the presidency of Nicolas Maduro as legitimate. Hence, Maduro would not be considered the duly elected president of Venezuela in the eyes of many countries.

I have taken issue with the Jamaica Council of Churches having a concern with the Government's position on account that friends must be loyal to each other in good and bad times. Blind friendship is no friendship.

Here are some of my concerns with the Jamaica Council of Churches' position:

1. The mandate of the church, according to Matthew 28: 19-21, is to: “Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

From this mandate it speaks nothing about arguments on Government's discussion to support foreign polices. Rather to preach about a soon coming king who will put an end to the kings and presidents of this Earth.

2. I do believe that the Jamaica Council of Churches is also being unfair to the Government as the word declares several times, one of which is in Micah 6:8, that “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”

It is no secret that the Venezuelan people have been suffering at the hand of President Maduro. People have been jailed, beaten, and even silenced for speaking freely. He has been hostile to foreign diplomats who oppose his leadership styles, and even eject and imprison many. If this is not injustice and merciless I would not want to know what loving justice it is the Jamaica Council of Churches preaches about.

I believe that the church should speak out about the harsh and wicked leadership of Maduro; not about a position to support or not to support foreign observance of governments.

3. We have several issues in Jamaica that the church must address, including harsh treatment of many Jamaicans who suffer at the hand of a poor government medical system. The Jamaica Council of Churches is too silent on issues of social and moral decay, but ready to speak outside of its mandate of justice and mercy.

It is full time the church goes back to a code of values and integrity. Talk about having a safe country which has respect for God and honour his commandments. Talk about a saviour of the world and how he can change the world. The church has got so caught up in what it should have little or no concern for in society that it has lost its sense of identity.

The Jamaica Council of Churches must have relevance to preaching and teaching the gospel, not politicking and grandstanding.

It's full time the Jamaica Council of Churches speaks to crime, love, justice, integrity, and honesty.

Christopher Johnson

Minister of religion


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