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Backlash on buggery: Church leads anti-sodomy rally

Published:Monday | June 30, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Thousands of Jamaicans yesterday participated in a church-led rally in Half-Way Tree, St Andrew, which, among other things, registered opposition to any possible repeal of the buggery law. - Norman Grindley/Chief Photographer
A woman is in tears as she participates in the church-led rally in Half-Way Tree, St Andrew, which condemned what it deemed an advancing homosexual agenda. - Norman Grindley/Chief Photographer

Gary Spaulding, Senior Gleaner Writer

The church will not be tricked or coerced into making impulsive or emotive pronouncements in the ongoing public debate that has been sparked by the dismissal of Brendan Bain, the retired University of the West Indies professor who lost his job as the director of the Caribbean HIV/AIDS Regional Training Network (CHART).

This sentiment was conveyed to a massive throng of flag-waving Jamaicans, clad, for the most part, in the national colours, which assembled in Half-Way Tree, St Andrew, by pastor of the Calvary Gospel Assembly, Donovan Cole, last evening.

"We will not be silent when we should speak boldly, nor will we be drawn in premature speaking through clever attempts to put the Church on the defensive," asserted Cole.

It was a Sunday evening when Cole was among scores of other well-known church leaders who closed the doors of their sanctuaries to venture out with their membership into the popular public square to flex their collective muscles as debate over a possible repeal of the buggery law takes root on the island.

Hate the lifestyle

The church leaders were quick to reassert that they did not hate homosexuals but abhorred the lifestyle, in clear reference to a raging debate that has erupted after Bain got the boot from the administration of the UWI.

The profession of love, notwithstanding, Maria Harbajan, an evangelist stressed that Christians would remain steadfast and militant against what was wrong in society.

Much emphasis was clearly being placed on the value of family, as scores of men and women with small children started the motorcade from the spot where the Church had been protesting for four weeks - at the entrance to the UWI, Mona, campus to Half-Way Tree.

As the Christians leaders spoke, a group of Rastafarians, bedecked in religious paraphernalia with their own flags, were vociferous in their support of what is dubbed Jamaica CAUSE (Church Action Uniting Society for Emancipation).