USE OF CONTRACEPTIVES RISING IN JAMAICA—02/14/15
According to the National Family Planning Board (NFPB), there has been an increase in the use of contraceptives among Jamaican women. Eighty-five percent of women reported using a contraceptive method, while 88 percent use it regardless of their level of education. Seventy-three percent of women in a union use contraceptives. The increase has been attributed to a greater awareness among women of available options, information, and where they can obtain contraceptives.
JAMAICAN MAN EXTRADITED TO FLORIDA IN CONNECTION WITH LOTTERY SCAM—02/15/15
When Damion Bryan Barrett of Jamaica was extradited to South Florida on charges relating to a lottery fraud, international history was made. He is the first Jamaican citizen to be extradited from his country to face these charges in the United States. He has pleaded not guilty to 38 federal counts stemming from being part of a group that victimized mostly elderly people in the U.S.
POLICE SEIZE GUNS, AMMUNITION—02/16/15
Jamaican police have seized 18 funs and 140 rounds of ammunition since the beginning of 2015 in an operation in Tangle River. They also arrested two men in regard to the weapons seizure. According to Gary Francis, Operations Officer for the Division, the search of illegal weapons is a top priority for law enforcement and represents part of a 2015 murder reduction program.
HANNA EXPRESSES SORROW AT PASSING OF THOMPSON GORDON—02/17/15
Lisa Hanna, Jamaica’s Minister of Youth and Culture, honored Clover Thompson Gordon, former executive director of the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC), and expressed sadness at his passing. Gordon Thompson died on February 15, 2015. Hanna said Thompson Gordon was a “master educator” and a leader who made enormous contributions to the development of Jamaica’s society. Hanna particularly noted Thompson Gordon’s influence on community volunteerism.
WILLIAMS, TUFTON TAKE SENATE SEATS BUT WAIT FOR COURT RULING—02/18/15
Jamaican Opposition senators Arthur Williams and Dr. Christopher Tufton took their seats in the legislature, while the Senate decided to refer issues relating to their re-seating to the Supreme Court. The Opposition senators were seated instead of Ruel Reid and Nigel Clarke, who had replaced them after their controversial resignations in November 2013. There has been no “formal indication” about the ruling from the Supreme Court to date.
SIMPSON MILLER PRAISES EUROPEAN UNION FOR ITS CONTRIBUTIONS—02/19/15
Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller offered praise to the European Union (EU) for the contributions it has made to the social and economic development of Jamaica during the past 40 years. Simpson Miller made her remarks at the keynote address at the start of the Government of Jamaica-European Union Cooperation 40th Anniversary event at Jamaica House. She noted that the relationship between Jamaica and the EU has remained strong over the years and that the EU has been the largest provider of grants to help with Jamaica’s development.
PUBLIC SECTOR WORKERS TO APPEAR IN COURT FOR CORRUPTION—02/20/15
Over 70 public sector employees will face the Corporate Area Resident Magistrate’s Court as part of a new crackdown by the Corruption Prevention Commission (CPC). Among them will be a senior official from Bank of Jamaica and 44 others employees from the central bank. They will have to answer accusations that they ignored their responsibilities by not filing statutory declarations on time for the past three years.
WARMINGTON SAYS JLP AREA COUNCIL 2 FAVORS RETURN OF HOLNESS—02/20/15
According to Everald Warmington, who has been re-elected to the position of chairman of the Jamaica Labor Party (JLP), Area Council 2 wants to see the return of Opposition Leader Andrew Holness to lead the party in the next election. Warmington stated his full support for Holness. The JLP Area Council 2 includes Portland, St. Catherine, St. Mary and St. Thomas. Warmingston’s re-election victory indicates strong support for Holness in the area.
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Giving With The Right Attitude
She was poor and a widow, not the greatest of position to be in during the first century. On this particular day, seemingly oblivious to what was going on around her and like she perhaps had done many times before, she approached the treasury – a place in the temple for the collection boxes. The scribes were there doing what they did best. It wasn’t that long before that Jesus said of them, “Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts; which devour widows’ houses, and for a shew make long prayers” (Luke 20:46-47a, KJV). They wouldn’t have noticed her, neither would the rich men who were there casting their gifts.
As she reached the treasury, she cast in her two mites. When compared to what others had put in, hers wasn’t much; however, unknown to her there were a pair of eyes watching her. Not only did He see her but He could see right through her, deep into her intent and her heart. Despite her obvious poverty, instead of using the amount on herself she brought it to the temple. She was not giving out of her excess but sought to worship God out of her need. Christ saw that her heart was “in the right place” and said to those around Him, “Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: for all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her [need] hath cast in all the living that she had” (vv. 3-4). Bible Scholar Matthew Henry observes: “It was but two mites, which make a farthing; but Christ magnified it as a piece of charity exceeding all the rest: She has cast in more than they all. Christ does not blame her for indiscretion, in giving what she wanted herself, nor for vanity in giving among the rich to the treasury; but commended her liberality, and her willingness to part with what little she had for the glory of God, which proceeded from a belief of and dependence upon God’s providence to take care of her.”
It is not the size of the gift that matters, but that whatever we give to the Lord we give with the right attitude. Our giving is a form of worship. Paul admonishes, “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7). So as you give to the Lord, in whatever form, do it with a cheerful and thankful heart. You will discover that “he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness” (v.10). Because He knows the intent of every heart, it is He who judges the heart. How is your giving?