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Friday, September 28, 2007



Dr. Lester CN Simon

The good Lord knows I am a wretched sinner and I need all the help and prayers I can get. But I know He must have a good sense of humour. After all, it was in third form at the Antigua Grammar School that Father Brown, in his immaculate pastoral gown, posited that God was the greatest gambler of all to put a naked man and a naked woman in a beautiful garden, with a snake in the grass to boot. It was a long time after third form when I realized that all Father Brown was saying was that life is full of risks, challenges and temptations.

And so, I take no sides in the recent story of the excommunication of the young girl and her mother from the church consequent on the alleged matter between the girl and the pastor. Suffice to say that the good humour of Father Brown and the supreme humour of the Lord visited me with bountiful cackles when I heard the report on the reasons for the excommunication on Observer Radio.

The news was that the girl and her mother were excommunicated because, among other things, they did not seek the solace of the church to solve the matter, according to the first book of Corinthians chapter 6 verses 1 to 20. The chapter starts thus: “Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?” Unfortunately, the family went to the police. In the same expiration (hold your breath), the church is saying that if the girl and her mother continued to make their presence felt on the premises of the church (or words to that effect), the church will seek (wait for it) legal action. What about chapter 1 verse 13 of the very same first book of Corinthians?

Dear Lord, why did you write two Corinthians? One for the family and the other for the church? Father Brown would probably have said: Though I speak with the tongs of men.

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