|ARCHBISHOP KNOCKS TT CRIME PLAN |
By CECILY ASSON Monday, April 21 2014
CAPITAL PUNISHMENT and new crime plans have been knocked by Archbishop of Port-of-Spain Fr Joseph Harris.
In his homily to a packed congregation at Glorious Saturday night at the Pro Cathedral of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Roman Catholic Church, San Fernando, Harris likened the two controversial topics to “cracked cisterns that provide no water”
And immediately turning his focus to those about to be baptised into the Catholic church, among them 90-year-old Aubrey Hamilton Mike, of San Fernando, Harris, the chief celebrant at the mass, challenged them to keep the “word of Jesus alive in their hearts” as they join others in informing and transforming lives so there would be no need for a new crime plan or for capital punishment. He blamed the turmoil in the nation on the lack of “moral and spiritual values.”
“How important is this here for us in Trinidad and Tobago,” Harris stated as he delivered the homily in a four-part mass which lasted just over three hours.
“We seek transformation of our society but we are like those thirsty persons who seek water in crack cisterns that provide no water. Capital punishment and new crime plans are like those cracked cisterns, they do not provide living water which facilitates new life.
It is the spirit of Jesus who keeps the word alive in one’s heart and who generates new life.
He then added, “It is by keeping the word alive in our hearts and minds that we will regenerate the moral and spiritual values which our nation seems to lack at this time.” Turning his attention to parents who he said had “tremendous responsibility” in their respective homes as it is the place where habits are formed, Harris said it must be first at the schools where children must learn to love the words of Jesus.
He went on to say, “All homes, my dear parents, are habit forming. Make it a habit of listening to God’s words. Your children are the future of this beloved nation of ours.” Knowing the love of Jesus, will see the “regeneration of moral and spiritual values.”
As he singled out the newly baptised persons, Harris warned that their’s was now the task to keep the word of Jesus alive.
“This is the task of every baptised person here to keep the word of Jesus alive in our hearts so that they continue to inform and transform our attitudes and actions. You are baptised and confirmed because the word of Jesus continues to live and have found a place in your heart and mind. Harris was happy that despite all despair experienced with the Good Friday crucifixion of Jesus Christ, his (Jesus) voice was not.
“The movement he began was not destroyed and we are part of that movement today,” Archbishop Harris said.
After mass, Newsday spoke to the relatives of the oldest baptismal candidate who said that Mike only made the decision to become Catholic about three weeks ago after attending the funeral of his last surviving friend.
Daughter Anna said, “He has been an Anglican all his life — our mother Joyce is Catholic they have been married for 63 years and we are all Catholics. When he came home from the funeral he said he wanted to become Catholic too but we didn’t believe him. We later realised that he was serious and we made the necessary arrangements for him. Tonight he is very happy and our mother was there to see him join our faith.”
Mike, a retired supervisor at National Petroleum (NP) is a grandfather of seven and still chauffeurs himself.