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Bajans urged to pray at noon

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Bajans urged to pray at noon
The bell at St Peter’s Parish Church. (FILE)

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The church knell will summon Barbadians to prayer at noon today.

The tolling of the solemn bells will be for one minute as Barbadians turn to pray to combat the deadly COVID-19 illness that has claimed 11 lives for the year.

The ringing will be heard at 11:59 a.m. throughout the island, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley announced yesterday as the country’s leadership asked Barbadians, rocked by the deaths, to petition their supreme being. Since the pandemic first hit Barbados in March 2020, 18 people, mainly the elderly, have died.

Mottley said the one-minute tolling of the bells will mark the start of five minutes of prayer nationally, which is part of the continuing effort by Government to bring Barbadians together in the fight against COVID-19.

The stations of the state-owned Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) as well as participating privately-owned broadcasters, will join the effort to signal to Barbadians that the exercise is about to start. During the prayer time the stations of CBC will adjust their programming to reflect the solemnity of the five minutes. It is also anticipated that churches that are conducting online services will engage in five minutes of prayer, starting at noon.

The request was first made on February 2, when Mottley, in a national address, asked the country to pause, pray and reflect on what must be done to save the country.

She stated then: “I believe that . . . whether you are Christian or whether you belong to another religion, we are a country that literally believes in a higher force. And I hope that we can collectively, as a nation, pause on Sunday at midday for five minutes for us to pray, for us to meditate, for us to reflect, to do whatever you do best.

“And I’m not talking just to the people who are accustomed to going to church. I’m talking about all of us, because youngsters will tell you about the higher force and tell you about Jah and all of those things, but I want us to do that on Sunday, while recognising that for the full two weeks (February 3 to 17, we should) reflect, relax, renew.”

Prior to her appeal, Dr Corey Forde, infectious disease specialist and head of isolation facilities, had also asked Barbadians to pray when he reported on the number of people in isolation and those in critical condition. (AC/PR)

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