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Moved by the spirit


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Moved by the spirit

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THIS WEEK, STREET BEAT caught the Holy Spirit and visited a couple of churches to get an idea of how Christians view society.
The team spoke to them about their faith and whether they thought Barbados was still a Christian society.
Paul Niles is an Anglican, who attends All Souls in Bank Hall, St Michael. He said he was disturbed about certain things in Barbados, but felt there was still hope.
“In Trinidad there is no feting during Lent, but [Trinidadian performers] can come here to perform and it seems there is even more feting here in Lent than usual. It is very disturbing, but there is hope as many young people are still involved in the church.
“I think Barbados is still by and large a Christian society, but people are slowly drifting away from the church,” he said.
Niles added that he has been in the Anglican faith from the time he was a child. As for All Souls, he said it was extra special.
“I have attended other churches but there is a welcome here you do not find in many other churches,” he said.
Samantha Greaves goes by the moniker Sammy G when she sings in the junior calypso tent – she actually won the Junior Calypso Monarch (13-18 age group) title in 2011.
One may feel calypso and church may be strange bedfellows but for Greaves, a member of All Souls, it is perfect harmony.
“I was here from the time I was two. The priest here wrote my first song and started me in calypso. I like All Souls as it is a family. Some young people may think it is boring because there are mostly old people here but I say if more young people came, it would be livelier,” she said.
The 15-year-old also gave her opinion on the feting craze that has been sweeping Barbados for years.
“I don’t think you should be feting before 17 or 18 when you have more of a sense of mind for partying and are not so gullible. I also find people who go out feting a lot often end up here [church] afterwards,” she said.
Another young churchgoer is Shanelle Brathwaite, also an Anglican.
“This is where I’ve been going all my life; my parents brought me here. It’s familiar, and the people are friendly. At times it could be boring, but the priest is a musical person, so he tries to liven the atmosphere. I want to encourage other youth to come and be closer to God as He is the creator of everything and I plan to keep going,” she said.
Margaret Hurley said she judged people on an individual basis rather than throwing up her hands and saying all was lost. A devout Anglican, she said it was important to remember the responsibility adults have concerning the lives of children.
“Children learn what they live, and some adults don’t set the right examples by putting in that extra effort to come into the church and serve the Lord. Some people bash the youth, but I deal with individuals so I would not say society is no longer Christian,” she said.
Charles Springer also thinks Barbados is far from lost. He said Barbadians had been raised to be Christians and had not yet strayed from that path.
“We are still a Christian society. We were built on a Christian foundation and it is still there though it is not seen every day,” he said.
Springer, a member of the New Testament Church of God in River Road, St Michael, for more than 20 years, said he loved his church because “the word of God is preached here and the Holy Spirit is here.”
As for youth, however, he said some were straying.
“I brought my son up in the church but he has grown up and no longer attends. Some young people are definitely straying but some are staying too. We have a good quantity here though I would like to see even more,” he said.
Monica Craigg is also not ready to give up the ghost concerning Barbados. A faithful Anglican, she gave a practical example of why she thought Barbados was still Christian-minded.
“The church is losing some ground, but Barbados is still a Christian society because when something bad happens they still shout to the Lord,” she said.
Craigg said she liked the Anglican faith for its “quiet times” and the feeling of family.
“I like the time you get for prayer and meditation,” she said.
Finally, Terrence Brewster said it was a matter of teaching young people about the word of God in order to bring them to church. A second generation member of the Pentecostal church for more than 40 years, he said everything you need was contained there.
“I would read The Bible to show them the way and invite them to church. I live my life by putting God first and trusting in Him to provide for all my needs. The church teaches the word and it will teach you how to accept God as your saviour and to trust in Him,” he said. (CA)

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