THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
JUSTICES OF THE PEACE LEAD MENTORSHIP PROGRAM—02/13/10
Pixley Irons, a justice of the peace and Ocho Rios Rotary Club member is leading a mentorship program designed for ninth grade students at Ferncourt High School in St. Ann. The program was prompted by the stabbing death of a student from another school at Ferncourt in December. The mentorship program is in its 12th week and features visits to the school by members of the St. Ann Northeast justices of the peace. There are more than 50 students in the program.
GOLDING WANTS MODIFICATIONS IN POLICE MECHANISMS—02/14/10
Bruce Golding, Prime Minister of Jamaica, has proposed that a supervisory agency be created to police the police. Golding made his proposal to Parliament in response to the theft of arms from police armories. Authorities believe the stolen weapons were slated for sale to gangs.
JAMAICANS IN UNITED STATES SHOCKED AT POLICE CRIME—02/15/10
Jamaicans living in the United States expressed their shock at the apparent involvement of Jamaican police in a large gun and ammunition crime on their home island. Former Jamaican police officer Clarence Aschall said he was “saddened” by the discovery and could not believe the Jamaica Constabulary Force was implicated.
SUPERMODEL RAISES MONEY FOR HAITI—02/16/10
Naomi Campbell, Jamaican supermodel, has organized a “Fashion for Relief” runway show to raise money for earthquake victims in Haiti. The show features many celebrities, including Chris Brown, Donna Karan, and Kelly Osbourne. It was hosted by Campbell and Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York.
JAMAICAN ECONOMY CONTINUES TO CONTRACT—02/17/10
The Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), the organization that monitors the nation’s economy performance, reported that while the economy continues to contract, with the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) dropping 2.5 percent between October and December 2009, there continues to be growth in the farm sector.
PILOTS’ BID FOR AIR JAMAICA STILL FACES DIFFICULTIES—02/18/10
The Jamaican Airline Pilots’ Association (JALPA) made a bid to take over the nation’s troubled airline, Air Jamaica, but Contractor General Greg Christie says it would be illegal for the government to negotiate with the group. Prime Minister Bruce Golding has stated that the pilots’ proposal was “fundamentally flawed” and that the group has not presented evidence of its ability to secure the required financing.
LARGE EARTHQUAKE WOULD CAUSE SEVERE DAMAGE TO JAMAICA—02/18/10
An earthquake of a magnitude similar to the one that occurred in Haiti on January 12, 2010, would cause severe damage if it hit Jamaica, according to the NEM Insurance Company. General manager Chris Hind said the company had several studies performed by the Earthquake Unit at the University of the West Indies to determine the impact of an earthquake on insured property.
Results indicated that earthquakes measuring 6.5 and over would cause damage that would impact the firm’s portfolio, despite its reinsurance status.
CYBERCRIMES BILL APPROVED BY GOVERNMENT—02/19/10
The Jamaican government will soon require individuals who buy cell phones and sim cards to provide identification. The new requirement is designed to decrease the potentially criminal use of such devices. Bruce Golding, Jamaican Prime Minister, is ready to ask Parliament for legislation on the issue.
JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
TORONTO JAMAICANS DONATE TO HAITI—02/14/10
In Toronto, Canada, the Jamaican Canadian Association (JCA) provided donations of C$11,000 to Haiti’s relief effort. Audrey Campbell, association president, presented a check for the amount to Dr. Eric Pierre, Haiti’s Honorary Consul General at a ceremony on February 11, 2010. The funds were raised via a concert attended by over 500 people.
JAMAICAN-BORN FLORIDA MAYOR DIES—02/15/10
Samuel S. Brown, a Jamaican immigrant who became the first black mayor in Broward County, Florida, has died at age 87. Brown was born in St. Mary, Jamaica, and was a student of theology before moving to New York. He moved to Fort Lauderdale later in his life and ran for mayor in 1998, defeating Alfonso Gereffi, who had been in the office for 18 years.
SHOOTING OF JAMAICAN UNDER INVESTIGATION IN BELIZE—02/16/10
At least two police officers in Belize are being investigated for the shooting death of O’Neil Jones, a 41-year-old Jamaican man in Ladyville. The officers were responding to a report of a bar brawl at the time of the killing. The police say Jones had a weapon when they shot him. Many eyewitnesses reported that Jones ran away, and the police shot him in the back.
JAMAICA TO PARTICIPATE IN SHANGHAI WORLD EXPO—02/17/10
Jamaica Trade and Invest (JTI) will participate in the World Expo in Shanghai, China beginning in May 2010. The Expo will last six months. In support of its activities, JTI plans to host an information center for visual artists concerning the opportunities associated with this mission. The Caribbean community will have a joint pavilion, and Jamaica will have a booth featuring Jamaican foods, a display of its creative industries, and a virtual tour of Jamaican music from Ska to Dancehall.
CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY
VOLCANIC ASH FALLS ON MONTSERRAT—02/13/10
The Caribbean island of Monserrat is suffering from exposure to clouds of ash coming from the Soufriere Hills volcano. The volcano erupted recently and issued a cloud of ash and smoke climbing six miles into the air. Residents have been told to wear face masks, but schools and businesses are operating as usual. The volcano also erupted in 1995 and caused a similar ash problem.
AMERICAN MEN ARRESTED FOR STRIPPING IN BAHAMAS—02/15/10
Three American men were arrested on charges of violating public nudity laws for stripping at a nightclub in Nassau, Bahamas. According to the police, the men are from Atlanta, Georgia, and were illegally stripping for a group of 107 women at the club, including some off-duty police officers. The suspects are being held at a detention center in Bahamas.
RICKY MARTIN CALLS FOR MORE ACTION ON HUMAN TRAFFICKING—02/16/10
Latin superstar Ricky Martin says that Puerto Rico must pass stronger laws to stop human trafficking in the U.S. Caribbean territory. Martin was visiting his home island to present a study conducted by his nonprofit organization, which advocates on behalf of children’s rights around the world. The study found that sex tourism and human trafficking were serious problems in Puerto Rico.
INSURANCE FIRM TO MOVE FROM CAYMANS—02/17/10
United America Indemnity Ltd., an insurance company, wants to move its legal headquarters from the Cayman Islands to Ireland. The move would be part of a trend of international firms looking to exit from offshore financial havens in the Caribbean. United America will ask shareholders to approve the move, saying that Ireland would provide a “sophisticated regulatory environment.”
EIGHT AMERICAN MISSIONARIES ALLOWED TO LEAVE HAITI—02/18/10
Eight of the ten American missionaries being held in Haiti on charges of child kidnapping after the earthquake on January 12, 2010, were released from jail and have left the island for Miami, Florida. A Haitian judge stated that Laura Silsby, the leader of the group of Baptist missionaries, and Charisa Coulter, another member of the group, would stay in Haiti to answer additional questions about their attempt to take 33 children out of the nation illegally.
INVESTORS FILE SUIT AGAINST ANTIGUA, CARIBBEAN BANK—02/19/10
Investors who were victims of a global fraud scam allegedly operated by R. Allen Stanford, brought a lawsuit against Caribbean regulators and the government of Antigua and Barbuda. The class action seeks compensation for the “unlawful seizure” of the Bank of Antigua. The Easter Caribbean Central Bank took over Bank of Antigua in 2009 after a United States fraud investigation of Stanford’s financial holdings.
KERR CARRIES JAMAICAN FLAG AT WINTER OLYMPICS—02/13/10
Errol Kerr, who is representing Jamaica in the ski cross at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada, carried the nation’s flag during opening ceremonies. As the only athlete to qualify for a sport from Jamaica, Kerr is the only representative of the island at the games.
USAIN BOLT WINS AT CAMPERDOWN CLASSIC—02/15/10
Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt began his 2010 racing program with a victory in the 400 meters at the Camperdown Classic. Bolt ran the distance in 45.86 seconds, breaking the meet’s record. He was far ahead of the competition for the entire race and won with a comfortable lead.
FINDLAY REPLACED BY CAMPBELL—02/17/10
Batsman John Ross Campbell will replace Shawn Findlay in Jamaica’s squad for the six-round WICB Regional first-class match against Barbados. Jamaica, the championship leader, will keep its title with a victory. Findlay has played a single match against the Leeward Island to date in the season, scoring only 11 and three.
CLARKES WIN FOR JAMAICA—02/18/10
Lerone Clarke and Lacena Golding-Clarke both provided victories for Jamaica at the Erdgas Athletics Meeting. Lerone Clarke, no relation to Golding-Clarke, had a good finish in the men’s 60-meter final. Golding-Clarke won the women’s 60-meter hurdles.
Having the Mind of Christ
Have you ever given thought to how powerful our minds are? According to an online source, the mind “is the aspect of intellect and consciousness experienced as combinations of thought, perception, memory, emotion, will and imagination, including all unconscious cognitive processes. The term is often used to refer, by implication, to the thought processes of reason.” That sounds like a mouthful of psycho-speak, but in essence the mind is the seat of our intellect and consciousness. To varying degrees we are shaped by our thoughts; not only do we act based on the way we think but our thoughts and resulting actions define who we are.
I thought of the mind and it’s importance in shaping us as individuals as I read Paul’s admonition to the Philippian Christians, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (2:5, KJV). A careful reading of the entire passage reveals a church that was in turmoil because its members were acting in ways influenced by unregenerate minds. In its unregenerate state, the human mind is incapable of following the Lord to a higher life despite our best intentions. It keeps us holding on tightly to our self-image and world view, so tightly we are unable even to know where the journey will take us, let alone hold on to the Lord. We are reminded of another of Paul’s admonition to the Roman Church, “…be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind” (12:2). The transformed mind is under the influence of the Holy Spirit and our intellect and consciousness should reflect that reality.
But what does it mean to have the mind of Christ? It means that we must walk in the same spirit and in the same steps with the Lord Jesus who sought not to do His own will but that of the Father (John 6:38). It us the assuredness that we are in the Father and He is in us, and that everything about who we are seeks to honor Him at all times. Given the various challenges we face in our daily lives that can be a very difficult thing to do. But it is to that higher standard that we are called; it is a walk that the Holy Spirit is willing to help us in.
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” How have you been behaving lately? What kind of thoughts have you been thinking?
The weekly news is compilation of new articles from top Caribbean and Jamaican news sources.