A senior pastor of a Spiritual Baptist church in Couva is promising a grand affair when they can dedicate their church in a ceremony which would have been a part of the activities in this year’s Spiritual/Shouter Baptist liberation day holiday. Instead, Queen Mother Hilary Nedd has had to call on members of the faith to adhere to measures imposed by officials to reduce the chances of contracting and spreading the covid19 virus, and which have also put paid to any mass celebrations.
Nedd, during a vibrant service on Sunday at Mount Zion House of Prayer Evangelical Mission at Preysal, further encouraged them to use the time to grow spiritually and always remember to follow God. Nedd told followers: “As we do what the laws of the lands say, I do not want you to lose the joy of the lord. The bible says the joy of the Lord is our strength.”
“This is a time to put the Christian teachings you learnt into practice. It is a time for you to recognise that the victory is yours.”
Monday is the Spiritual/Shouter Baptist Liberation Day holiday and owing to the stay-at-home measures there would be no gatherings/celebrations.
As such, Nedd together with two other leaders, shepherd Lester Joseph and commander Olive Burgan, hosted two services back to back on Sunday to commemorate the holiday.
Nedd said: “We can pray all day and night, I am not saying that God will not be moved by our prayers, but we have to put discipline into perspective.”
The church is under construction and at “every stage of the building process,” services were conducted, Nedd told Newsday.
“We were working to have the building dedicated in July but because of the situation, we have to postpone it. When we can do it, it will be a grand affair. The church started in Point Lisas, Couva, and we have been on a journey, going from one place to the next. Now we are here on our own spot.”
Joseph reminded the Baptist community that as their forefathers persevered through rough and trying times, so too will the Baptists of the day.
“They were not able to do a lot of stuff because of religion. As they persevered, so too would we in these trying times. We will continue to stand and not lose hope and not forget the promises that Christ gave us.”
Baptists faced state persecution and did not have the freedom to practice the faith.
The 1917 Shouter Prohibition Ordinance prohibited the activities by members of the faith. It was repealed in 1951.