Religious education


A Bridgetown magistrate today administered a lesson in religious tolerance on a visiting preacher.

It came after Stephen Fran Bricknell, who is currently staying at #4 Club Morgan Ridge, Christ Church, pleaded guilty to refusing to leave the premises of the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church, having been directed to do so by Simon Emtage, a person authorized by the owner. Jared Pudney appeared in court yesterday on the same charge and also pleaded guilty.

According to prosecutor Sergeant Martin Rock, on January 18, 53-year-old Bricknell went with 33-year-old Pudney to the church where a private, invitation-only function was taking place. The two, who had been previously told they were not welcomed, caused a commotion when asked to leave. They had to be forcibly removed by church members who alerted the police.

“I went there to preach,” Bricknell told the police after he was detained. Today in the prisoner’s dock of the No. 1 District ‘A’ Criminal Court, he again tried to deliver his message.

He began by saying that in 1965, an Australian man named John Samuel Holmes came to Barbados after “the assembly of God” was mounted here in the 1800s. Bricknell added that in 1976, there was a separation, “. . . from the persons in Barbados because they followed the lead of a wicked man who blasphemed the humanity of the Lord Jesus”.

However, Magistrate Douglas Frederick grounded that sermon to a halt, informing Bricknell that the court would not be used in such a manner.

Frederick said while he understood Bricknell was following his beliefs, order must be maintained.

“Religious tolerance is important to Barbados; that’s why in Barbados you would find . . . we have the most churches per square mile and even rum shops next to churches, but they all exist in harmony,” Frederick told the man.

“If you are at right angles with their beliefs and you believe they are doing something wrong, you could probably tell them, but not by trespassing on their premises, not by harassing them . . . because we must have tolerance in this island,” the magistrate maintained.

However, Bricknell went on to quote scripture as he sought to explain his reasons for being at the #4 Neils, St Michael church.

“In Ezekiel Chapter 3, God [places] upon me to see someone who was righteous and has departed into evil . . . to draw their attention to that fact. Otherwise, if God had to judge that evil, I am guilty,” said Bricknell, who pointed out that the event on the day was not a religious one, neither was it an assembly meeting, as “none of the persons I saw had a Bible with them.”

“What I was trying to do is warn them that what they were doing violated the teaching of the very man whose books are on their bookshelves . . . [that] they claim to follow
. . . . That is what led me to that place on that day,” Bricknell stated.

The magistrate then informed Bricknell that now he had completed his mission, there was no reason for him to return to the church.

However, the preacher replied: “Except that I am certain that my message did not get to all of them and I would like to have the opportunity to at least preach the message to all.”

But Magistrate Frederick placed Bricknell on a six-month bond to keep the peace and be of good behaviour. If he breaches the order, he will spend one month at HMP Dodds.

He was also warned not to venture onto the church’s premises or the residences of its members, and not to harass them in any way.

7 Responses to Religious education

  1. Mazie Taylor
    Mazie Taylor February 10, 2017 at 8:39 am

    You did not read what Jesus told His disciples? If they welcome you in the place stay but if they reject you take off your shoes dust your feet and move on. Don’t Force Your Religion on people.

  2. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn February 10, 2017 at 8:54 am

    That is why I don’t believe in churches .Right now in Jamaica they have about 3 pastors charge for sexing under age girls. Most these churches now a days are corrupt. All they looking for is money to get RICH.I believe in God not the church. Barbados have too many churches.

  3. Bonita Weekes
    Bonita Weekes February 10, 2017 at 9:43 am

    Having sex with underage girls is not a church problem, it’s a MAN problem, how many men do we have here who are doing that? There is the case going on now with the 7 year old and there are other under age girls who have been destroyed by men. I went to school with a girl who it was said that her father had sex with her. How disgusting is that, I see that we always want to look at the other person or place and ignore what is happening in our own back yards. Something is happening to our boys also, I have never before seen so many feminine boys and not many people seem to be concerned about these behaviours. If I had my way I would castrate them. My concern is what is happening to the children, I am not talking about a church so don’t bother to reply to me with foolishness.

  4. John Strutton
    John Strutton February 10, 2017 at 9:47 am


  5. Tony Waterman February 10, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    @Angus Benn!!!!There is a difference between The Church (The People) and the Church Building (A Place for Meeting) and when and who is to say when/if there are too many Church Buildings, sure Not you or I.
    When Jesus said “Take up thy Cross and follow me, in effect he created a Church,(People) Those ardent followers.

    why are you Picking on Jamaica, did we in Barbados not have one that was let out of Dodds sometime Last Year??? it happens and is Happening everywhere, also with Young Boys too.

    What i don’t Understand, is how come they sent that Young School Girl down to “Jenkins” for Observation, and this NUT case is given a Slap on the wrist and sent back out on the Street, is this a thing of Colour????

  6. Vad50 February 10, 2017 at 3:20 pm

    How can the magistrate ordering a man to show respect for people’s rights; bring out comments that do not apply to the subject. The man refused to leave when he was asked to leave. This does not required us going all over the world; and bringing in other topics that are not in the newspaper article. If he had left the property when he was asked to; he would not have appeared before the magistrate. I believe he deserves the peace bond.

    • Harry Smyth February 10, 2017 at 9:35 pm

      Bravo!! Finally someone sees the point…


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