THE HONOURABLE PORTIA SIMPSON MILLER will be the next Prime Minister of Jamaica and will win a fifth term for the PNP. That prophetic statement about the first female Prime Minister of Jamaica was made by the Rev. Dr. Philip Phinn and recorded in The Gleaner's Mind&Spirit feature one year ago. It was also in last month's issue of the Love Herald.
That was a remarkable pro-phecy by Pastor Phinn. Phinn pastors the Word of Life organi-sation and founded an organisation that is accredited by the United Nations. I met him in 1995, when we were members of the delegation of the Governor-General to the Moral Re-Armament Conference in Caux, Switzerland. Also on that trip were politicians Philip Paulwell, Keith Russell and Rev. Luther Gibbs among others. Phinn believes in the gifts of the Spirit including speaking in tongues, healing, and prophecy.
Pentecostal leaders tend to practice speaking in tongues and praying for healing; but prophecy, one of the gifts of the Spirit mentioned in 1 Corin-thians 12, is neglected. And leaders within the historic churches make a distinction between foretelling and forth-telling aspects of prophecy. They tend to proclaim about the consequences of one's action, but shy away from predicting.
CREDIBILITY ON THE LINE
What Phinn has done has placed his credibility on the line. It took courage. And obviously must be close to the Lord to know the counsels of God. When most seasoned political analysts, with notable exceptions statis-tician Myers and Observer columnist Mark Wignall, were saying Peter, he stood firm on his prophecy.
The last time I saw something as spectacular as this was my school days at Calabar, when I took my sceptical self to listen to an evangelist at an open-air meeting on Whitehall Avenue. I had already dismissed his claims of healing and was ready to leave as it started to rain and the people were leaving also. The preacher said: do not leave because he was going to pray that the rain stop in 10 minutes. I had a Timex watch and I started to time him. The rain started to get heavier, but at exactly 10 minutes the rain ceased!
This Phinn prophecy is a watershed one in the history of prophecy in the Church in Jamaica as it relates to politics. This is no psychic business. He was bold.
Equally bold was Portia in challenging the PNP establish-ment in using the colour yellow, of Reggae Boyz fame, instead of the traditional orange. She also was decisive in not having a debate; I still think that was her only mistake in the campaign, and won. She said no to the power of the PSOJ and MAJ and won!
Portia will need that same courage and decisiveness to tackle the task.
PM SHOULD 'FLY THE GATE'
There needs to be rethinking about the Cabinet and the month of handing over will give her time to make good changes. Last week, Tony Blair, Prime Minister of the strongest economy in Europe, announced a Cabinet position to tackle social exclusion aimed at the most disadvantaged communities. He declared that Britain is uncaring. The new Most Honourable will need to do things differently for the many ordinary delegates who placed confidence in her.
Portia being Prime Minister means that any Jamaican can aspire to the top job and she must 'fly the gate' so that every Jamaican can aspire to be Head of State. As Barbados PM Owen Arthur said, every Barbadian should be able to become head of state. It is ridiculous for the head of state to be the Queen of England and the G-G, her representative. Pastor Phinn, is there any more word from the Lord for 'Sister P' and the people?
Rev Devon Dick is pastor of Boulevard Baptist Church and author of 'Rebellion to Riot: The Church in Nation-Building'.