There is a new church organization that has been formed since the suspension of all non Belize City pastors and churches from the Belize Association of Evangelical Churches. As we had previously reported, the Belize Association of Evangelical Churches, under its interim president, Pastor Howell Longsworth, suspended all countrywide branches of the Association and registered itself only with the Belize City Chapter as the Belize Association of Evangelical Churches. We also told you that the Belize Association of Evangelical Churches was responsible for choosing the Church Senator this year and is suspected to be one of the motivating factors for the suspension of the entire country, so as to leave that senate choice up to a few Belize City Pastors. Earlier this week, one of those pastors suspended, the chairman of the Toledo chapter of the Evangelical Association, spoke to PG TV about the wrangling in the Association and the choosing of the senator.
Victor Hernandez, Pastor Toledo Outreach Church: I would like to say that the whole country was excluded, all the churches not only in Toledo but in every other district. It was actually only 10 churches from Belize City that chose the Senator. So in reality that senator does not represent the church in this Nation, but it represents 10 churches in Belize City.
Reporter: Are you guys planning to protest or anything of such?
Victor Hernandez, Pastor Toledo Outreach Church: Right now I wouldn’t want to comment on that because we should be having a press conference soon, probably sometime this week.
Also vocal about the issue, passionately so, was Pastor Santie Valencia on Rise and Shine yesterday.
Santie Valencia, Rise & Shine Guest: We have a part of the church in Belize now that for years now, and I hope that our brethren are listening to me, and if they aren’t somebody tell they mek they listen. Uno do wrong to this country of Belize. Uno gaan and uno kick out all of the rest of the country’s chapters of the Evangelical Association that were working on constitution. Uno gaan and uno register behind we back. Uno gwen and uno a represent Evangelical Association of Belize when da only Belize City. Wah lee hand full a pastor and when we go out deh fu prayer time we neem see 5 or 6 a uno pastors from Belize City, and da uno a represent Belize? And uno a speak and even have a senator di represent Evangelical Association of Belize when we have North East South and West. We have from Punta Gorda to Corozal, from San Ignacio to San Pedro and Belize City and uno a represent Belize and uno a speak fi all the Evangelicals inna this country of Belize? Inna Pg and Dangriga and Cayo and Benque and Corozal and Orange Walk and uno know how uno a speak fi the Evangelicals inna this country when da only Belize City di talk.
Today, a press release was issued and it has informed that the hundreds of pastors since expelled from the association , have now formed a new Church Organization called the National Evangelical Association of Belize. This includes the 30 plus National Executives of the former Belize Association of Evangelical Churches, the BAEC. These National Executives represent approximately 200 churches across the nation. That press release issued today says,
“In light of the recent developments with the Belize Association of Evangelical Churches and the resulting suspension of all national leaders from the BAEC, we have been compelled to form a new Association, the National Evangelical Association of Belize, to give proper and full representation to all Evangelical Churches in the nation, as well as corresponding within the larger body of the Evangelical Association of the Caribbean.”
According to the press release,
“The new BAEC Constitution was unanimously approved in 2014 as we continued to make final adjustments. In September 2015, a core of Belize City leaders abandoned that approved Constitution, suspended all National Leaders outside of Belize City, and registered a different Constitution from what we had all agreed upon. We asked repeatedly for a meeting together for 2 months of the Belize City Chapter and got no response. All National Chapters sent letters requesting Arbitration on this issue but we were denied. We all created the national plan together. We all formed the new Constitution together. We adjusted it together. We accepted it together. Now, we as the National Evangelical Association of Belize, are continuing with that same plan and Constitution together with leaders all over Belize – nothing has changed for us. “
The release says that the National Evangelical Association of Belize is the legitimate National Evangelical Body since the Belize Association of Evangelical Churches only represents the Belize City chapter. Even so, the release makes a plea for unity saying that the NEAB ,
“ continues to stand with our arms open wide to our Belize City partner churches, hoping and believing that we can be reunited to the Glory of God and the betterment of our nation.”