Bishop of the
Anglican Diocese of Barbados
Henry’s Lane, Collymore Rock, St.Michael, Barbados
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Today is: Tuesday,26 September,2017 12:10:24 PM

MAKING DISCIPLES

The Church in every generation has faced a number of challenges as she proclaimed the Good News of Jesus Our Lord. One of the most significant of these is ensuring that the Gospel message is proclaimed in a manner that speaks to the issues of the day.

This challenge is still with us. It is one of the more significant ones facing our diocese at this time.  To keep our message relevant, we must keep working to ensure that we maintain a link between our congregations and parishes and the wider community.  We must be aware of what is going on in the wider community and address these issues with the Gospel message.

It is a great temptation to see the demands of ministry and mission only in terms of the faithful who are with us each Sunday.  This however would lead us to fall short in one of the most important areas of our ministry. There is a need to pay attention to the mandate given to us by Our Lord. In St. Matthew 28:19

Go out into the world and make disciples......

To achieve this we must be aware of the ‘world’, that is, the many issues that we should address as we seek to share the Gospel message of Jesus Our Lord.  It is this awareness that led us to commission Mr. Richard Carter, one of our leading sociologists to do a study of the Barbadian society to identify the pressing social issues that the diocese needs to address

In January, 2006, there was a special sitting of Synod to discuss some of the challenges emerging out of a study of the society by Mr. Carter.  The study identified several areas that are crying out for a response from the Church.

The Synod discussed the type of ministry that we need to exercise in response to the pressing issues of society.  It identified six areas to which the diocese should make a response through the creation of special programmes.

These areas are:

1. The youth within the Church: Those who are members of our parishes and who need the type of ministry and programme that will keep them in Church and help them to develop spiritually.

2. Youth on the block: Those who were never in Church, or who were once there and drifted away and now find community and support and fellowship on the block

3. The 25-40 year olds: Those who may be facing many new challenges with the least not being able to cope with a young family amidst the many other demands of life.

4. The Family: With its many challenges

5. Poverty: With a look at how we in this diocese can respond to this condition that effects many persons within our parishes and beyond

6.  Education : Within the Church and in the wider community

Soon after Synod, we put in place a Design Team that has been working to shape some parish based programmes to address the areas mentioned.  The Design Team has been hard at work and are now at the stage where members will meet with Deanery Councils to get some responses to the proposed programmes.

These meetings will take place during the month of October.  It is hoped that arising out of these meetings will emerge some well organised programmes that can be put to work in the parishes, and enhance those that are already there.

All this is an effort to refocus our mission and ministry in the diocese. We are fully aware that we need to keep abreast of the developments of the wider society and work to ensure that our mission and ministry remain relevant and effective.

We are blessed in this diocese with many gifts and talents, both clerical and lay. The challenge before us is to put these to work for the expressed effort of furthering the cause of Jesus Our Lord in this beautiful country of ours. The challenge is one of making disciples.

Our country like the rest of the world is in a rapid process of change.  It is changing at a pace that is so fast, that sometimes it seems difficult for many of us to cope. But we cannot sit by and allow these changes, especially those that cannot work towards the building up of our community, simply to take over.

We need to intervene and make our special contribution to maintaining the good things for which this country has been known for a very long time: Good manners, thrift, decency, the fear of God and respect for each other.

We pray for God’s continuing support as we try to live up to the great responsibility we have as Christians. It is a responsibility to transform this world. We begin to do so by transforming lives, offering the way of Jesus Our Lord that points us away from many of the negatives that can only work for the destruction of our community to a way that is wholesome and righteous.

Remember our primary task as Christians is one of making disciples.






 Last Modified: 1 September,2011