By Aaron Humes: It’s not quite the same as a declaration of churchgoing and clerical activity as an essential service or even approved business, but the Alliance of Ministers and Leaders of Belize considers there is a way to move forward on the issue of reopening churches.
The Alliance led by Patrick Menzies has been petitioning the government to recognize the position of the church as an essential service as it relates to the State of Emergency. The clergy is not currently listed as an essential service and many churches across the country have found new ways to conduct praise and worship sessions.
Some insist they wish to worship their God in accordance with his teachings while complying with the rules of the state. But Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte doesn’t appear convinced.
The Attorney General explained, “I think God blessed us with good sense and know that we can worship God and praise God without necessarily endangering ourselves with a disease. I think we have to find creative ways to do things. The simple fact of the matter is that we cannot be too close together with this disease at this time right now in the country. It is simply too dangerous. I don’t know about your God, but my God is very understanding and if I die from COVID-19 because I am stupid he will be very disappointed that I didn’t use the sense he gave me.”
Reached this afternoon, Menzies issued this statement: “We want to thank the Attorney General for his response to our second request, to have church services following the Government’s guidelines. We want to thank him for all of his advice. May God continue to use the Attorney General to show us how to be smart. Thank you.”