Altar call

BIM makes strong play for religious vote

With general elections less than a year away, one of Barbados’ newest political leaders Thursday made a direct appeal to the Church to “stand up and be counted” for the good of the country.

Leader of the Barbados Integrity Movement (BIM) Neil Holder made the call in an open letter to the island’s religious leaders in which he totally dismissed the notion of politics being “a nasty game” that must be avoided by the Church at all costs.

BIM Leader Neil Holder

“No longer can we as believers stand idly by in the conviction that ‘politics is a nasty game’, we need to engage it in order to clean it up!” Holder said, adding that “if the Church demands greater from our leaders and reminds them that we are the servants of the people and not lords over them, all will witness a marked change in the future outcome of our country”.

Amid serious economic challenges, Holder, whose fringe party is looking to take the fight to the ruling Democratic Labour Party and the main Opposition Barbados Labour Party and has already announced plans for the decriminalization of marijuana, further stressed the need for the Church to play an important role in the national conversation, while telling church leaders they could no longer be satisfied to sit on the sidelines and to “prepare and preach sermons” to congregations, while the rest of the nation is left to its own peril.

In fact, he took a nasty jab at the religious leaders themselves, saying several of them secretly engage political agendas from their pulpits while telling their congregations “there should be no involvement in politics”.

“Encourage our people to vote and exercise their franchise for positive change!” he suggested, while questioning, “How can a religious leader tell any Prime Minister, or MP for that matter, that he or she is doing wrong without the vestment of moral authority because their very house is in a right state of order?

“How can we speak on righteousness when it is the very topic that many religious leaders of today avoid for several known reasons?

“Why is there comfort in conforming to the transient practices and adopted customs of society when the world needs to be looking to the Church for guidance and direction? Why is there deafening silence at a time when the people are looking on in consternation, disgust and fear to let the emperor know that he is naked?” the BIM leader further asked.

While identifying himself as “a true believer”, Holder also took a swipe at the current political directorate which he said not only displayed “a severe lack of decisive management and a patriotic vision”, but frequently, in both their speech and actions, demonstrated “no respect for the Almighty God”.

He also criticized them saying they had become more focused on the academic accomplishments rather than the social and spiritual well-being of the people.

And while stressing the need for Barbadians to get back to the word of God and to be their “brother’s keeper”, he made a point of identifying with the Errol Barrow mantra of “friends of all and satellites of none”.

“By this, I am calling on the churches to return to a place of prominence to be ever more present and vocal in the affairs of our nation for both the young and old,” Holder said, adding that BIM stood ready to work in “partnership” with the Church, should it form the next Government to bring back the island from the moral abyss.

“Barbados was once revered as a very religious and Godly nation where our citizens young and old demonstrated exceptional regard for our leaders in whatever sphere they would be found. Today, sadly, it appears as though we have reached the bottom of the pit where it can be assumed that Government has separated the Church (religious organizations) from the seat of governance,” Holder said, adding that “it can no longer be satisfactory for the Church to sit in a bubble snug in the conviction that it is meeting the needs of its immediate congregants whilst the entire nation is at risk.

“Rome is burning while we sleep! I am therefore encouraging all churches to join with BIM to rebuild our nation Barbados, line upon line and precept upon precept without compromise or shame,” he said, while calling on the Church to work with his political grouping on a series of town hall meetings entitled Together We Will.

nevilleclarke@barbadostoday.bb.

13 Responses to Altar call

  1. Anne Ince
    Anne Ince March 24, 2017 at 12:50 am

    Who are these people ?????

    Reply
  2. jennifer March 24, 2017 at 2:44 am

    Well this article demonstrates PURE lack of knowledge, ignorance, and stupidity on the role of the white washed church upon the masses. Waste of time here dear. No TRUTH only prosperity. Them got the people in this docile state.

    Reply
  3. hcalndre March 24, 2017 at 3:06 am

    This BIM fellow wants to reinvent his slave mentality on the masses of bajans again, you should build a church and see how many followers you can get.

    Reply
    • Jennifer March 24, 2017 at 3:27 am

      @hcaindre – you’re wrong. The slave mentality NEVER left. And he know this too.

      Reply
  4. Jennifer March 24, 2017 at 3:33 am

    If we examine the WHOLE slave conundrum you will see that this man is ill informed. This is why we keep making the same mistakes as a people which is producing the same results. Both of those two main political parties are like two gangrenous legs that needs amputation without anesthetic. He is quickly falling into the same boat.

    Reply
  5. Jennifer March 24, 2017 at 3:34 am

    I would suggest to him not to talk too much more.

    Reply
  6. tsquires March 24, 2017 at 8:15 am

    I totally agree with all of you as the physical shackles of slavery, (cheap labour) have been replaced by the mental shackles of religion, we need to inner-stand words and symbolism, as this is how we are being deceived by the be-lie-vers, so if this young man is a be-lie-ver, all he is telling us is that he is seeking to be a member of the house of privilege. Barbadians let us take off the blinkers of mental slavery, young people wake up please and stop fooling yourselves, nor allowing politricians to fool you with political trinkets

    Reply
  7. Ann Thomas March 24, 2017 at 10:36 am

    One big, long stupse! These alternative parties ain’t long start and already disqualifying themselves from serious contention.

    Reply
  8. Gearbox1964 March 24, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha…some church leaders just as corrupt as some politicians when it comes to money.

    Reply
  9. Milli Watt March 24, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    Amen Hallelujah Praise the Lord….Amen, Praise the Lord Hallelujah Praise the Lord Amen Amen Hallelujah………say it again brother. Jesus is coming but given the comments he might want to slow the arrival. This is Lent and in keeping with the season I am going to give up BIM because these sweet drinks are NO GOOD FOR YOU!

    Reply
    • Jennifer March 24, 2017 at 6:30 pm

      Research Lent, you sound lacking. Its utter Roman (white man) rubbish. Queen of heaven garbage. Read Jeremiah.

      Reply
  10. Ernesta Catlyn March 24, 2017 at 9:48 pm

    Why does the church have to get involved in active politics to ‘stand up and be counted’. The church, needs to be independent of any particular party because they must be prepared to call a spade a spade. Based on articles in the papers in recent months two Pastors were highlighted ‘cursing’ the opposition. Is that how you want to represent God. I know of two person who stopped going to a particular church because of one of these lambasting. Wherever there is injustice, hate, oppression etc. it is your role to speak up – you do not need to be aligned to a party to do that. Speak truth from the pulpit, from the highways and byways. Let you life be the canvass; what elective politics foolishness. The problem with the lot of you ‘religious entrepeneurs’ is that you want popularity, power and wealth here on earth. Consider the flowers, the birds, ……..

    Reply
  11. Peter March 24, 2017 at 9:59 pm

    Peoples! As Mac Fingal would say, You are flogging a dead horse. Neil Holder has no political background. He is fronting for some individual/s. He latches on to topical issues as if some person/s is or are guiding him. Is Barbados Today willing to do some educational background checks. I think he is working undercover for the DEMs or for someone who is not happy with the DEMs. Whew! A former police officer without any CXC qualifications, who was selling Insurance, Becomes Party Leader. Has to be following instructions. Has to. And expects to be taken seriously?

    Reply

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