OUTSIDE THE PULPIT: Wishing all a bright new year
Of the Father’s love begotten. Ere the worlds begun to be, He is the Alpha and Omega, He is the source, the ending He, of the things that are, that have been, and that future years shall be. Evermore and evermore. – Hymn 56 verse 1. Ancient and Modern.
CHRISTMAS DAY HAS COME and gone, but we are still in the 12 days of Christmas. I do hope that you all had a good Christmas.
Now all of us are looking forward to the New Year and what it has in store for us. I do hope that you have not spent all of your money for the Christmas season buying new clothes, shoes, furnishings, you just name it, because you will have to wait very long before your next payday, if you are a worker.
January and February are usually the two very hard months. As 2016 comes to a close, the country should have benefited from the long weekend. Barbados had the fortune of hosting more than 45 000 cruise passengers – which should have been a plus for our economy.
Retirees, like myself, who receive a pension from the National Insurance Scheme (NIS), have a lot to look forward to in 2017 because the director of the NIS, Ian Carrington, is reported as saying there will be a raise from January 2.
He also stated that there would also beincreases for people receiving other benefits like maternity and funeral grants. The increase is good news and I hope that it will not be misused by unscrupulous family members.
Last October Minister of Finance Christopher Sinckler increased the non-contributory pension by $10 per week. Now is the turn for the contributing pensioners and we are grateful for it. And finally, I would like to advise my readers that if there is anything that they do not need, please leave it in 2016 and do not take it into the new year.
A bright and healthy 2017 to all my readers.
The St Mary’s Augmented Choir presents a recital of Christmas music on Sunday at 6 p.m. at the church. Guest artistes include the choir of the Central Bank of Barbados and the Royal Barbados Police Band.
The St Mary’s Anglican Church has a new rector. She is the Rev. Jillian Crawford, the first female priest to take charge of the city parish. The appointment takes effect from March 1.
The James Street Methodist Church will be holding its watchnight service on December 31. The preacher will be the Rev. Derick Richards.
All Methodist churches will be observing Covenant Sunday on Sunday. At James Street, the service begins at 9 a.m.