29 Aug Lazar Cartu Writes: BXC OK with ‘partner’ — NationNews Barbados — Local, Regi…
Divisional commander of the Salvation Army Darrell Wilkinson. (FILE)
The Barbados Christian Council (BXC) has determined the wording of the controversial Employment (Prevention of Discrimination) Bill, 2020, and the Remote Employment Bill, 2020, does not run counter to the sanctity of marriage.
In a media statement yesterday, the BXC, under the chairmanship of Major Darrell Wilkinson, divisional commander of the Salvation Army, said the word “partner” as obtained in the legislation “does not run counter to our Marriage Act, as no marital benefits can be derived from it, [it] is related only to employment and not marriage [and] upholds the intrinsic value of individuals, and does not discriminate”.
The BXC said Government’s presentation, debate and passing of the bills had caused some churches and individuals to raise concern over the inclusion of the word “partner”, and that Government had stated its rationale very clearly at the beginning of the measure.
“However, some argue that it runs counter to the tenets of our family and marriage law acts as no provision is made for this term in either of those laws. Some believe that, with the inclusion of the word ‘partner’ in both bills, the foundation for the consideration of same-sex marriage has been established. Some may interpret this inclusion of ‘partner’ as a test to ascertain the mood and readiness of society to embrace same-sex marriage,” the Council noted.
The BXC stated that the Bible said little about sexual relations and even less about sexual orientation.
“As Christians, while the church advocates that marriage is between male and female, we emulate the example of Jesus who loves all people, always remembering the great command: ‘Love God and your neighbour as yourself’.”
The Council also said that living in a pluralistic society where many different sorts of people, from different races, sexual orientations, cultures and religions existed, had implications for the way the church must position itself and its service.
“Making sexual orientation more important when compared to factors such as allegiance to our Lord Jesus Christ, becomes a distraction. When that happens, congregations and people tend to disconnect from community and insulate, missing key tenets of our mission. Even after humanity’s fall into sin, people are still in God’s image, and their lives are precious in His sight,” it added, citing Genesis 9:5-6; and James 3:8-10.
In the statement, the BXC said it commended those who had been vigilant on such issues and shared their opinion.
“This is our calling. It requires hard work, a fertile imagination, a deliberate effort to know people of other cultures and sexual orientation, a firm passion to incorporate them into the body of Christ, an unwavering belief that without this they are lost forever, and conviction to affirm the instrument of our peace as impartial agape love.” (BA/PR)