This morning, eight pastors, led by president of the Evangelical Association of Churches, Pastor Eugene Crawford, met with Prime Minister Dean Barrow in his Belize City office for an update on the churches’ recommendations for editing the Revised National Gender Policy.
Around this time last year the Policy was released to uproar as it sought to enshrine teaching on multiple genders, abortion, homosexuality, prostitution and the like in public life from schools to businesses, and threatened harsh penalties for opponents.
The Government committed to re-revising the Policy, but information suggests that this is being done without benefit of the churches’ recommendations. The meeting concluded around 1:00 this afternoon and we spoke with Pastor Crawford.
“That would reflect on the press release that we are putting out. So, even today that the government has now that they have said they have received from their consultants of the response that the church has submitted. As soon as that is reviewed, they will rethink with the church”.
Reporter: “But in the email we saw the complaint from Pastor Scott Stirm, about the long period of… in action”.
Pastor Eugene Crawford: “The church takes some time also to really put it together, and so, the government is ready, in a very short while to respond with their research”.
Pastor Crawford went on to describe the tone of the meeting as open and generally good, and the Prime Minister as being receptive to the churches’ position. Some have called for the complete scrapping of the Policy but the Government has refused that.
A prayer group was meeting at the Central Assembly of God Church on Freetown Road this morning, praying their leaders on. No date has been set for the next meeting.
The pastors are the members of the newly created Executive Team of the Association, made up of leading pastors from all districts and Belmopan. In a press release issued this afternoon the Association quotes directly from the Prime Minister’s remarks.
The remarks, if made, do not reflect the position of the Government, and Government will not move to implement the (Revised) National Gender Policy without seeking agreement with the Churches.”
The Association for its part goes on to reiterate its strong feelings about its position with regard to Biblical and family values, Constitutional protection of the family and religious freedom and conviction.
See related article containing comments from Anne-Marie Williams > http:/juicyecumenism.com/2014/03/17/csw-58-catholics-and-evangelicals-bypassed-in-belize/