An Open Letter To Our Political Leaders On The Observance Of Lent

By Rev Canon S

Sebastian Campbell

I AM certain you are all aware that we are in the holy season of Lent and as such our religious heritage demands specific respect in the protocol of our culture.

It is certainly most unfortunate that the month of May has been captured for the holding of elections. Months immediately before May always encapsulate the solemn season of lent and it causes the temptation to ignore our religious heritage at the expense of politics.

I urge that in the future, the Prime Minister revisit this May timing so as to quell the temptation.

There was an agreement with the churches and political parties all the way back to the 2002 election that outdoor political rallies, parties with any and all lavish campaigning will not happen during Lent.

Unfortunately, this agreement has been ignored. Lent is an established Christian tradition spanning hundreds of years. At its start, on Ash Wednesday, thousands darken church doors to symbolically go with Jesus in the wilderness.

They hear these words, or similar words, given by the priest on behalf of the church: “Lent is a time of preparation for the Christians Passover (Easter). Lent is a time to prepare for this celebration and to renew our life in the paschal mystery. We begin this holy season by remembering our need for repentance and for the mercy, forgiveness and grace proclaimed in the gospel...I call you therefore to the observance of a holy Lent.”

This letter is to especially ask that Holy Week, the culminating week of Lent (April 9 – April 15) be strictly observed. It is the holiest week on the annual calendar. Let there be no distractions from the Passion and death of our lord Jesus Christ.

In the name of the church, let there be no political rallies, parties or outlandish activities. Urge, please, your supporters to go to church. I wish you every blessing in the campaign as we enjoy the greatest democracy in the world, the Bahamas.

God bless the Bahamas.


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