United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands

UCJCI Update

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Rev Herbert Augustus Redway Sr 100 years!

Wednesday Oct 20, 2021
 
A native of St. Ann, Herbert Augustus Redway, was born in Dumbarton, Liberty Hill on
October 22, 1921. Redway had his sight set on becoming a pharmacist but it was while he was
undergoing preparation for his chosen vocation that he experienced a compelling sense of call
to the Christian ministry. Such was the force of this call that he proceeded to apply for and
succeeded in gaining admission to Theological College. Upon his satisfactory completion of
the requirements for ordination as a minister in the Congregational Union of Jamaica, he was
duly ordained. Thus began a period of active and dedicated service extending into the fifth
decade.
Following the completion of his probation he was inducted as pastor in the James Hill Charge
of churches in Clarendon in 1951 and then, shortly after getting married to his late wife Mrs. of
Linette Mavis Hall Redway they set out for service in what was then British Guiana (now
Guyana) under the auspices of the Guyana Congregational Union from 1953 to 1957.

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Sweat, Blood and Tears by Rev Kraig DeLeon Deidrick

Wednesday Oct 13, 2021
 
Sweat, blood and tears were the price paid. There are many who have taken our freedom for granted, in the words of the Elder, “wi tek badvantage
of wi freedom”. Our heroes and heroine where among those who were endowed with the spirit of resistance and resilience. They recognized that
human life, their life, had intrinsic value and worth and being enslaved
was not to be their lot. They recognized that this intrinsic value would
have to be fought for as negotiations were only as strong as the paper they
were written on. Armed with this knowledge, they charted a path of freedom by rising against the former slave masters who relegated their lives to
that of servitude and subordination. Who were those people to brand them
as slaves? after all, they recognized that everybody’s blood is red.

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Beyond the Pulpit Young man, arise!

Wednesday Oct 06, 2021
 
This coming Sunday is Synodical Men’s Fellowship
Sunday in the United Church. Gods willing, I will be
enrolled as a member of the United Church Men’s
Fellowship, through the Hope United Church where I
presently worship.
In relaying this to a friend via WhatsApp, she seemed
perplexed by my intention. As the conversation
ensued, I picked up the reason behind her perplexity:
that I, a young man in my mid-20s, am about to join an
auxiliary of the church that is traditionally filled with
older men, who are somehow seen as tired, lazy, very
rigid and stubborn about their operations.
As that friend asked me “Why?”, I thought very deeply
about the negative perceptions and stereotypes that
abound about the Men’s Fellowship, and I responded
with the question “Why not?”

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Understanding Vaccines

Wednesday Sep 29, 2021
 
While taking the Covid-19 Vaccine is a matter of choice, we encourage
each person to give due consideration to the matter to prevent adverse
effects.
We were joined on several occasions by Dr Delroy Fray, a member of
the United Church and the Clinical Coordinator at the Western Regional
Health Authority (WRHA), to discuss the COVID-19 vaccines. In one
instance, he shared that 99.9 per cent of COVID admitted patients in
WRHA did not take the vaccine. According to the Ministry of Health in
Jamaica, the 1,860 persons who have died from COVID-19, so far , were
unvaccinated.
At a point, only three COVID patients at the Cornwall Regional Hospital
received the first dose of the vaccine, Dr Fray said. He reported that
those three people were only admitted for a few days before being
discharged. Westmoreland recently experienced a spike in COVID
cases, especially among children.
Here are some questions and concerns addressed in the various fora:

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REPARATIONS AND THE FAMILY

Wednesday Sep 22, 2021
 
It is our considered opinion that in order to right the wrongs of an evil period in history there is the
need for former European Colonizers to provide payment or other assistance to the former colonies
such as the Caribbean nations.
We believe the demeaning system of chattel slavery that was maintained for centuries has left
considerable damage to the state of race relations in the world and the psycho-social wellbeing of the
descendants of the formerly enslaved Africans.
It is to that end that we are seeking to mobilize the Christian community,
beginning with our own denomination, to be part of the movement to
advocate for reparatory justice from the European nations. At the last Synod
of the United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, a special
reparations task force was established to explore how the United Church
could more actively participate in the growing advocacy for reparatory
justice for the descendants of formerly enslaved Africans. 

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Greatness Redefined

Wednesday Sep 15, 2021
 
When I think of Greatness Redefined, I think of the
woman at the well in St. John 4. Like her, we run to many
wells to fill voids in our hearts and souls instead of
drinking from the fountain of living water and feeding on
the bread of life. Like her, the search for worth and
purpose pushes many in
the arms of promiscuity or
under the crushing weight
of accolades.
But, her encounter with
Jesus at the well brought
about a different understanding of what greatness
is and where it is found.

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The Church humbly recognizes wrongs and boldly acts to repair

Wednesday Sep 08, 2021
 

I wish to thank Mrs. Karen Francis for the comprehensive article, published
in the August 25, 2021 Weekly Update grappling with complex issues
relating to reparation for the centuries-long enslavement of African people.
This is a matter with which the Church has not always grappled openly and
indeed there may be some who wonder why the Church would engage such
an issue. Your treatment of the subject confirms that this is an issue whose
time has come and that the Church should indeed bring the Kingdom values
to bear on these significant historical, international matters.
By posing the question as “Seek reparations or forgive and forget?”, you
challenge us to consider where on the continuum of potential responses
would Jesus’ response be found. The Scriptures can tell us.

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Seek Reparations or Forgive and Forget?

Wednesday Aug 25, 2021
 
“In my conversations with persons on the matter of reparations, I have encountered responses ranging from hissed
teeth, ‘Bawda-Cat-like’ response, “Dat will neva ‘appen,” to
strident declarations that, “The UK mus’ pay”.
So, what of reparations? Should we simply forgive and forget or
do we champion a cause for just recompense? Let’s pause for a
moment and consider the discourse by reflecting on the
concepts of Forget and Forge.

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Phoenix Rising! The International University of the Caribbean

Wednesday Aug 18, 2021
 
“IUC faced the clear and present danger of not
being viable as far as its debts were in relation
to its income.”
These were the words of Professor Roderick Hewitt, President of
the International University of the Caribbean (IUC) in a recent
interview.
However, the image of the legendary phoenix of Greek and
Egyptian mythology, which symbolizes renewal and resurrection,
came to mind as he described the current endeavours of the
institution which is owned and operated by UCJCI. President
and Board have been mandated to address the realities facing
the institution and have taken a multi-pronged approach to
tackle the challenges faced noting that success would not come
by ‘waving a magic wand’. A significant injection of funds would
be necessary to address the historic debts. Instead eight
strategies have been undertaken.

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Ministry in Virtual Spaces

Wednesday Aug 11, 2021
 
‘Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! …’
Words from 1 Chronicles 9 known as, The Prayer of Jabez, have
become the request of many Christians in a search for wider
horizons for ministry and influence. COVID 19 has opened up
enlarged territory for UCJCI as it has for many denominations of
the Christian Church.
One of the ways in which this is evident is through the work of
Rev. Kevin Calvert, a United Church Minister who was appointed
Minister of the Visual and Performing Arts in November 2020.
Known also by the stage name, Nana Moses, this creative
uses storytelling, poetry, drama, dance, music and film to proclaim the gospel of Christ and engage in advocacy
So how has Rev. Calvert engaged his mandate from the UCJCI.
A number of initiatives have been undertaken.

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United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands