Amid reports of an LGBT pride parade in The Bahamas next year, Bahamas Christian Council (BCC) President Bishop Delton Fernander said yesterday that the organization will not support any such event and will host an opposing rally to make its stance known.
Fernander said the counter rally will be similar to one held in Jamaica some years back. He said that in the aftermath of a devastating hurricane, now is not the time to “play games with our faith”.
“The Bible clearly calls it wrong, and we cannot call it right,” he said.
Fernander added, “We’re going to bring the full power of the church, and we’re going to ask the church to stand up in this country and we’re going to have an opposing rally. And if you were to Google and look at what Jamaica did, the whole nation came out and they stood strong for Jesus Christ.
“This might be a Sodom and Gomorrah moment. We’re going to ask this country to stand for right and if it is that we need to make a movement to let those that might be uncertain of our Christian values, uncertain of what we believe, we’re going to ask, ‘Which side are you standing on in The Bahamas?’
“This is how strong we take this. And if the church has to take it to the level, we will book out some of the largest, maybe the stadium is the largest place. We have already engaged some of our friends around the world and they were coming for Operation Restoration and rebuilding, and we were planning a night of hope, but we would be more than happy to not only share that as a night of hope, but a restoring [of] Christian values in our country.
“We have gone through a horrific hurricane, one that we’ve never seen before. Now, this is not the time to play games with our salvation, play games with our faith.”
The local LGBT community announced earlier this year that it plans to host a pride parade next year. Organizers have noted that the event will be private to ensure the safety of its participants. Pineridge MP Frederick McAlpine, who is also a pastor, last week called for a national discussion on same-sex unions.
However, in a statement released earlier this week, the BCC said homosexuality is in a “direct contradiction to the teachings of the Bible”.
“While we appreciate that The Bahamas is a democracy which gives people the right to freedom of speech and expression from a legal perspective, as a body of churches we hold firmly to the tenets of our faith which speak directly to the lifestyle and practice of homosexuality,” it stated.
“We believe it is in direct contradiction to the teachings of the Bible as it relates to God’s divine plan for male and female existence and the natural purpose of their individual and unique physical construct, sexual identity and sexual expression.”
It added, “The Bible, in which we firmly believe, clearly states that homosexuality is a sin and that the practice of homosexuality is a violation to God’s natural design of and purpose for the human body and intercourse. We cannot in good conscience violate the written expressed will of God.
“In addition, the constitution of our country in its preamble establishes that the foundation and moral compass of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas is built on ‘Christian values’. The perspective of ‘Christian values’ clearly favor the traditional family consisting of a man and a woman, husband and wife, as the natural God-ordained relationship.”
The BCC said The Bahamas has already seen societal and moral impacts with the introduction of a carnival.
“Pride events would have a further eroding effect of our historic and commonly accepted norms of decency in public behavior,” it said.
“While we recognize that homosexuality and lewd public behavior are not the only sins which are committed in our country, we must do all in our power to stem the tide of sinfulness where we find it, especially en masse.”