THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
PRIME MINISTER VISITS CUBA—01/25/14
Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller will meet with Raul Castro, president of Cuba, to discuss international and regional matters. The two leaders will also talk about the 2014 CARICOM/Cuba Summit, the fifth such meeting to occur. According to Sandrea Falconer, Jamaica’s Minister of Information, topics of discussion for the meeting include trade within the region, sustainable development, climate change, transportation, natural disasters, and science and technology.
GOVERNMENT WILL NOT LEGALIZE MARIJUANA NOW—01/26/14
While Jamaica’s government has received encouragement from advocates overseas to move ahead with its decriminalization of marijuana for medicinal and recreational use, A.J. Nicholson, Minister of Foreign Affairs, suggest the nation will continue to proceed cautiously. He also said that legalizing the use of marijuana is “out of the question” for now.
JCF WAITS FOR DECISION ON PARTNERSHIP WITH AGRICULTURE MINISTRY—01/27/14
The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) is waiting for the nation’s Ministry of National Security to make a decision on a proposal that the police agency partner with the Minister of Agriculture in a new approach to fighting farm theft. This crime results in losses for Jamaica’s farmers of more than J$6 billion every year. The JCF has proposed that it be permitted to create a division that would work out of local police stations and be responsible only for protecting and supporting the agricultural sector.
HILL CHALLENGES PRIME MINISTER TO CREATE “KNOWLEDGE-DRIVEN” ECONOMY—01/28/14
Financial consultant Aubyn Hill believes that knowledge and education are key if Jamaica wants to end its high poverty rate and poor economic condition. He is challenging the nation’s Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller to begin changing the economy into a “knowledge-driven” proposition. Jamaican could become the “knowledge capital of the Caribbean,” Hill says, using this approach to grow its economy.
HEAD OF JCAA SAYS COUNTRY COULD BE “EXPORTER” OF AVIATION PROS—01/29/14
Leroy Lindsay, the director general of the Jamaica Civil Aviation Authority (JCAA) has called for Jamaica to become a source of pilots and air traffic controllers for the world. Lindsay says that Jamaica’s pilots are in demand in countries like the United Arab Emirates and in other Caribbean nations. Jamaican should focus on training pilots to meet the global demand. Air traffic controllers are also sought after throughout the world because of their high level of training.
JAMAICAN TEACHERS TO BENEFIT FROM TRAINING IN SPECIAL EDUCATION—01/30/14
Many classroom teachers in Jamaica will see the benefits of a Special Education module that is designed to equip them with ways to help teach students who have special needs. The Ministry of Education in Jamaica believes that the training course, called “Inclusive Education: Teaching Children with Exceptionalities in Mainstream Classrooms,” is the work of the Special Education Project of the Education System Transformation Program. The Nathan Ebanks Foundation developed the training module.
FORMER PRIME MINISTER SUPPORTS BANKS—01/31/14
Former Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding says that Jamaicans should be fair when considering the issue of banking fees. He wants the discussion to avoid “sensationalism” and “populist tendencies.” The financial sector in Jamaica has been criticized for the fees and charges imposed by commercial banks. A report from the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) suggests that income from fees represented a larger portion of total revenues at commercial banks in 2012 than in 2010. The report stated that fee income at commercial banks rose 30.8 percent during this period. Golding says the increase reflects a response to the current economic environment that is impacting banks.
HISTORIC LOCATION CLAIMED BY RASTAFARIANS—01/31/14
Rastafarians in Kingston showed their support for a claim to a hilltop location where one of the founding members of the spiritual movement headed a community in the 1940s. The community was ultimately destroyed by the British colonial authorities in 1954. Some 100 demonstrators believe their community has a rightful claim to the hilltop known as the “Pinnacle.” The first self-sustaining Rastafarian settlement was founded there by Leonard P. Howell, and the site, which is located in St. Catherine parish, is held sacred by Rastafarians. The ruins of Howell’s home was designated a national heritage site by Jamaica in 2013, but adjoining lots are owned by St. Jago Hills Development Ltd.
JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
POLICE IN GUYANA SEEK JAMAICAN IN MURDER INVESTIGATION—01/25/14
Police in Guyana are looking for Jamaican Anthony Lloyd Neville Morrison, 36, in connection with the murder of a Jamaican woman, Anesta Gardner, whose body was found in a hotel room. The woman allegedly came to Guyana a few weeks ago and checked into the hotel with Morrison, who has disappeared. Jamaican passports of both individuals were found in the room with the body.
JAMAICAN-BORN DENVER BRONCO TEAM MEMBER LIVES “DREAM”—01/26/14
The Denver Broncos are set to play in the Super Bowl in New Jersey, and when they take the field, Jamaican-born Orlando Franklin, 26, will meet a career goal envied by most National Football League players in the United States. Franklin, who plays right tackle, is expected to take a major role in protecting quarterback Peyton Manning. While this is a lot of pressure for Franklin, he says playing in the Super Bowl is a “dream come true.”
JAMAICA JOINS WITH CUBA, CELEBRATES REVOLUTION—01/27/14
A celebration of Cuban independence was held at the residence of Bernardo Guanche Hernandez, the Cuban Ambassador to Jamaica. Many guests attended the event, which also represented a welcome for the new Cuban Ambassador and his family, despite inclement weather. Flags of Jamaica and Cuba were prominently displayed as the audience listened to the Cuban national anthem played in honor of the country’s 55th anniversary of its revolution.
BRITISH BROADCASTING COMPANY AIRS REGGAE SPECIAL—01/28/14
Individuals from the West Indies migrated to England by the thousands in the 1950s after World War II, and as a result, Jamaican music took hold in the country. In the 1960s, the music became more popular, with ska and rocksteady influencing trends. In the 1970s, reggae and Bob Marley took center stage, and in 2014, a crew from BBC1 and BBC Xtra radio broadcasting stations from England traveled to Jamaica to record a five-hour documentary on Jamaican music. The crew is led by Wilber Wilberforce, a Briton of Jamaican heritage, who noted how reggae’s influences are evident in all types of modern music today.
IN FLORIDA, MORRIS CHALLENGES ADVENTISTS TO ACCEPT THE DISABLED—01/29/14
Floyd Morris, the president of the Jamaican Senate, has called for the Seventh-Day Adventist Church to become more accepting and accommodating of people with disabilities. He also urged the church to include the disabled in its leadership and decision-making roles. Morris made his remarks at a Special Needs Ministry Summit at the headquarters of the church in Miami, Florida. He said the church is meant to meet the needs of society’s most vulnerable people.
MLS AN OPTION FOR TALENTED JAMAICAN PLAYERS—01/30/14
A demand for players from Jamaica by Major League Soccer (MLS) increased in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft. This represents more opportunities for local players to seek professional careers overseas. Jamaicans favor playing in Europe, but they could be looking to North American leagues next. According to Damani Ralph, player agent, young players tend to view the MLS as a second choice, but he believes the league offers good opportunities for players to mature before trying for their top choices.
CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
MAHABIR NOT AFRAID OF D.E.A. INVESATIGATION—01/25/14
AGRICULTURAL TALKS BEGIN IN TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO—01/26/14
FOOTBALL UNION SAYS PRO LEAGUE MUST BE SANCTIONED—01/27/14
TWO CARIBBEAN NATIONS TO COMPETE AT SOCHI OLYMPICS—01/28/14
INITIATIVE TO EXAMINE INEFFICIENCIES IN CARIBBEAN PRISONS—01/29/14
LEADERS IN CARIBBEAN, LATIN AMERICA DECLARE “PEACE ZONE”—01/30/14
BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
JAMAICA’S TELECOMS MODEL TO BE ADOPTED BY CARIBBEAN REGION—01/25/14
According to Phillip Paulwell, Jamaican Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, said that CARICOM nations are investigating the possibility of adopting Jamaica’s telecoms model. This would include the financing of the Universal Service Fund (USF).
OVERSIGHT PLANNED FOR CRAFT MARKET SECTOR—01/26/14
Dr. Wykeham McNeill, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism, announced the formation of a craft market oversight agency that will regulate and monitor the 14 markets in Jamaica showcasing items for sale to tourists. According to McNeill, the agency will create a “level playing field” for all craft markets, with the same rules and regulations applying to all.
HISTORIC DEAL WITH NIKE LANDED BY TEEN FOOTBALLER—01/29/14
Jamaica’s Leon Butler, 16, is the first football player in the area to receive an endorsement contract from Nike, a major sporting goods firm. Butler obtained the three-year contract from Nike because of its recognition of his talent and the good reviews received from its scouts. Butler came up through the ranks of the Phoenix All Stars Football Academy and signed with Ajax of the Netherlands.
ROYAL BANK OF CANADA TO SELL JAMAICAN OPERATIONS TO SAGICOR GROUP—01/30/14
The Royal Bank of Canada, the second-largest lender in the region in assets, will sell its Jamaican banking business to Sagicor Group Jamaica Ltd. The sale is being completed at a loss of C$60 million to Royal Bank and marks the end of the firm’s six years of operation in Jamaica.
Caribbean Science and Technology News provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
NEW CARIBBEAN CLIMATE INNOVATION CENTER TO OPEN—01/26/14
SCIENTIST FINDS NEW CHEMICAL COMPOUND IN JAMAICAN GANJA—01/27/14
ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
TESSANNE TO PERFORM AT ST.KITTS FESTIVAL—01/25/14
Jamaica’s Tessanne Chin, winner of “The Voice” reality-television competition, is slated to perform at the St. Kitts Music Festival where she also performed 2007. The Tourism Authority in St. Kitts announced Chin’s participation in the festival, which will take place at the end of June 2014.
GRAMMY WIN BENEFITS FEW ARTISTES—01/27/14
Reggae obtained Grammy status 30 years ago, but Maxine Stowe of Jamaica who has worked with Dony Music International and Island Records, believes that the benefits of winning a Best Reggae Album award depend on the reputation of the artiste. According to Stowe, only the winners who have already obtained a good sales position in mainstream stores receive an increase in sales outside ethnic or reggae markets.
BLUE MOUNTAIN MUSIC FESTIVAL ANTICIPATED—01/30/14
Jamaica’s Ministry of Tourism and Entertainment listed the Blue Mountain Music Festival officially as an event to take place during Reggae Month. The festival will take place in Blue Mountain and John Crow Mountains National Park on February 22 and 23, 2014. The event has its origin in Misty Bliss, a cultural festival held every year that has evolved into a two-day event.
GROUNATION 2014 STAGED AT JAMAICA MUSIC MUSEUM—01/31/14
The third staging of the Grounation will be held at the Jamaica Music Museum at the Lecture Hall at the Institute of Jamaica. It will open a series of four weekly programs and will feature Dr. Omar Davies and Dr. Clinton Hutton. The series them in 2014 is “Seeing Sound and Hearing Images: African Aesthetics in Popular Jamaica Culture
JAMAICAN BOBSLEDDERS COMMIT TO FIGHT FOR VICTORY IN SOCHI—01/25/14
The two-man Jamaican bobsled team qualified for the Olympics in Sochi 26 years about the first team was introduced in 1988 in Calgary, Canada, and inspired the movie “Cool Runnings.” Most of the men on the 1988 team were also teammates in 1994 and 1998, and remain part of the federation. Winston Watts, one of the initial team’s members will drive Jamaica’s entry at Sochi in 2014.
NEW ANTI-DOPING BOARD MEMBERS APPOINTED—01/26/14
Danny Williams, Jamaican businessman, was confirmed as the new chairman of the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO). His appointment follows the resignation of the entire board in November 2013. The panel will also include Dr. Winston Isles, Gary Peart, Neville Williams, Dennis Lalor, Dr, Thelma Nelson, Anthony Lawrence, Dr. Patricia Holness, Carmen Tipling, Reverend Devon Dick and Jacqueline Lyn Stewart.
FRASER-PRYCE VICTORIOUS IN 60-METERS IN LOCAL MEET—01/27/14
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Jamaica’s Olympic 100-meter champion, was the winner in the 60-meter dash at the Queen’s/Grace Jackson Meet, a local competition. This was her first appearance in 2014. Fraser-Pryce plans to compete at the IAAF World Indoor Championships. She ran the 60 meters in 7.11 seconds.
BAILEY SAYS TENNIS PROGRAM A SUCCESS—01/30/14
The president of Tennis Jamaica, John Bailey, praised the Play and Stay tennis program at Mannings Hill Primary School in St. Andrew. He called the program a “major success” and says Jamaica will see benefits right away. The program is sponsored by the National Commercial Bank and is designed to introduce the game to young people and inspire future tennis champions.
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Loving One Another (Part 1)
Two of the most profound things about Jesus’ teachings were the simplicity of His messages and how those messages often impacted the different domains of our lives. The more I read the Gospels, the more convinced I am that amidst the hustle and bustle of life, and the many mixed messages from our pulpits, a good place to go is back to basics. What did Jesus have to say about specific situations in which we find ourselves?
I thought about this as I had cause to reflect on His words, “A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; even as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” (John 13:34-35), and wondered: what would happen if we all did that? In one incident recorded in Mark, a Scribe asked Jesus which commandment was the first of all, to which He replied, “The first is … thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength. The second is this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these” (12:29-31). The profoundness of the last eight words of His reply is beyond words, yet Matthew took it one step further when he reported Jesus saying, “On these two commandments hangeth the whole law, and the prophets” (22:40). Nothing else that we are commanded to do come close to the command to love God with all our being AND our neighbours as ourselves. Paul expands on this concept when he writes, “If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am become sounding brass, or a clanging cymbal. And if I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And if I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and if I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profiteth me nothing” (1 Corinthians 13:1-3). Without the love of Christ demonstrated to each other in our everyday lives, nothing we could ever do really matters.
Now, I readily concede that some people, for whatever reasons, are very difficult to love. Left to our own imaginations we would prefer not to be within a “country mile” of them, yet Jesus did not command us to love only the lovable or those who were nice to us. He said, without ambiguity, “Love your enemies, and pray for them that persecute you: that ye may be sons of your Father which is in heaven … For if ye love them that love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?” (Matt. 5:44-46). I’m struck by Jesus’ reason for our showing this kind of love; “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” We should note His deliberate use of the word “disciple” instead of “follower”. The disciple is a learner, a pupil, whose only goal is to learn from his teacher in order that he may become like that teacher. A follower has no such ambition. As we reflect on this important distinction, the relevant question therefore is: which are you?
The weekly news is compilation of new articles from top Caribbean and Jamaican news sources.