Bush tells Caymanians to go back to church

| 27/01/2010

(CNS): Following what he said was a decline in church membership and attendance, the premier has said that the only churches which are now filled to capacity are those predominantly of non-Caymanian origin and he has asked why Caymanians are not gathering to worship. Speaking at the Heroes’ Day celebrations, which this year focused on the Cayman Islands’ Christian heritage, McKeeva Bush said the community needed to revive it and a wider commitment to community service for more than just religious reasons. Bush said that the country’s churches had provided much of society’s support and suggested that working for others through the church was an important part of human development.

“Academics who study how communities and societies function agree that community service increases a person’s sense of belonging and hence their social capital — that is, the connections with a wider group which have a mutually accepted value. It has been argued – most recently here by the researchers who compiled our National Assessment of Living Conditions (NALC) – that in the Cayman Islands the less fortunate members of our society are rapidly losing access to such social capital,” Bush said.

The erosion of social capital, the premier noted, can lead to anti-social behaviour, evidence of which was all too common, and the community needed to stir itself into action. “It may sound trite to some, but without doubt the Golden Rule ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’, in churches and outside of church, is a significant part of the answer to the challenges that we face as a country,” he added.

However, he said that he had observed a decline in church affiliation and attendance in recent years. “Sundays come and go, and we do not find ourselves with our families and amongst our friends gathering to worship God publicly,” Bush said. “Nor do we send our children to Sunday school, and I speak here to our own, born and bred, most of whom grew up connectedto some church, yet now only attend for a funeral. Now, it seems it is the churches whose membership is predominantly of non-Caymanian origin that are packed to capacity. We cannot blame the state of our society on anyone else but ourselves. So, why not, Caymanians?” he asked.

“Let’s start the new decade here. Let’s get back to church and be a part of a real uplift of the community.”

Heroes’ Park, where the celebrations took place on Monday 26 January, already contained a number of monuments built to recognize key elements of Caymanian culture, and the islands’ Christian heritage must be included, the premier said and vowed that when funds “are on hand, we will erect a bell-tower that will say to the world how proud we are of that heritage.”

During his address Bush pointed out that those being honoured this year embodied a self-starting pro-active principle. "Where they have seen a need in the community that is not being filled, they have acted on their own initiative to fill that need. Accordingly, I congratulate them on their achievements, thank them for their efforts, and issue a further challenge to them to work even harder, to develop these very values, and inculcate them far and wide.”

He also encouraged parents to put their children in church and Sunday school in an environment where they are taught ethics, and how to make moral choices from a young age.

“We should all, as the Bible says, ‘train up our children in the way that they should go, and when they are old they will not depart from it’. This is especially true where adults in that environment can live as good examples,” the premier said. “There can be no better grounding for a child than what they learn in Sunday school.’

He said that as the premier — and minister responsible for the soon to be forthcoming National Planning Initiative – government is committed to doing everything it can to provide other essential forms of support that will help to improve the life chances of our people today.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Subsequent to his carry on against the Auditor General he might do well to go to church but should try to learn some good Christian principle whilst there.

  2. Rufus B. Saye says:

    Interesting that the most vocal church goers (of any denomination) seem to have the mindset that church attendance and the resultant cleansing ( i.e. "washing my sins away") will absolve them of their responsibility to LIVE as their credo teaches during the rest of the week…

    I prefer to live by this motto 7 days a week, used by many police forces on their vehicles:


  3. Anonymous says:

    I think the message Mr. Bush gives is wrong. Going to church does not make you a good person.

    Making the right choices in life, live with good morals and live within a set of good values are way more important.

    Doing the right thing has got nothing to do with attending Church.


  4. Anonymous says:

    Many of cayman’s churches do not follow the Bible’s teaching properly. I have seen women speaking in Cayman’s churches. The bible is very clear on this point:

    1 Corinthians chapter 14 verse 34:

      As in all the congregations of the saints, women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.

    • CaymanLover says:

      1 Corinthians 11:5

      "…every WOMAN (female) that prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonours her head…"

      So how do you reconcile those two verses?  In mine a woman can clearly speak in church.

      Paul was not saying that women must be mute in church (also remember Church does not mean the bricks and mortar the church is built from.  Church is the gathering of believers – "where two or more are gathered…")

      Stop spewing verses without understanding what the language of that day actually meant (ie innuendo, custm, metaphor).





      • Anonymous says:

        Oh yes, there’s lots of stuff that "doesn’t actually mean that". Maybe if there wasn’t so much contradiction it wouldn’t be so bad.  Take what Jesus says in Luke 14, verse 23-33. Let ne guess he didn’t "actually mean" it:

        If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters—yes, even his own life—he cannot be my disciple. 

      • frank rizzo says:

        She can pray and prophesize all she wants…just not in the gathering of believers.

        • CaymanLover says:

          Where in the bible does it say that?  Or is that from "convenient theories for you"???

          Why would God not want women to openly pray and prophesize?  He made us in His image so what logical reason could there be for mandating submissive silence?

          Please bear in mind that the bible was written by a bunch of men back in times when women were kept in subservient roles.  What better way to control than by writing out rules and claiming its God’s will.

          I believe in God but I do not blindly follow what men (I mean humans) interpret at God’s intent.  God loves me the same as he does a man and I could only uplift and honor Him by openly praying and prophesizing.  You rally think I’m going to burn in hell for that?  If so, see you there!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Perhaps its because Caymanians are now very much outnumbered due to the 3000 plus status grants, permanent residencies,etc.  I haven’t seen the Premiere at my Church so unless he’s been outside those churches in the swamp, how can he know who is in church?

    True Christiians are ethical, law abiding, incorruptible,  and more concerned with acting in the way God wants them to do, than spouting off about what others should do.  I have to say, I don’t see much ethical behaviour in this Govt.  

  6. Anonymous says:

    The word Christian means belong to Christ, of or from Christ, just like the word Caymanian means belong to Cayman, of or from Cayman, etc…

    The Bible is very clear that no one can be a Christian if they don’t truly love Jesus, and if they don’t truly love Jesus more than anyone else in their life, be it child, parent, spouse, etc.  When one becomes a new born-again Christian, Jesus becomes their first love over anyone else.

    To be a true Christian, one must truly love Jesus as their first love over any other person in their life. 

    Who is in love with Jesus above all others in their life?  Whoever is, is a true Christian.  Simple.

    And loving Jesus like that means always wanting to change to please him more and more and be more and more like him.

  7. Anon says:

    so r we suppose to go back to church to fund the religious institution or for spiritual guidance? I went to church 17 years of my life and now I get more out  worshipping on my own and with my family than i ever did in a church environment church.  Just another place for ppl to look down at one another and clique up.  Maybe the preachers aren’t preaching anything of substance…who knows…gotta look at all sides of the issue

    always telling Caymanians things that don’t make any sense that we MUST do.  Be friendly to the foreigners, go back to church…nothing wrong with being god loving and fearing but i’m not going to be a religious uncle Tom to a society & Government that’s not doing anything to stop the slowly weeding out Caymanians out of jobs. Freedom to worship in the domestic space or at church what business is it of government? Appeasing the church folk I see.

    We need to turn around and start making some serious demands of our own.

  8. Karl Marx-EbanksReligion says:

    Religion is the ganja of the Caymanian masses.

    • Anonymous says:

      Religion is the ganja, or ganja is the religion?

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, I agree that Caymanians should go back to church, but we must be honest about it. It is no good to pretend to be a born again christian, going to church on the weekends, getting up in public & shouting outloud that "I am a born again christian" if I do not mean it, & believe me the LORD knows who is fake & who is not. To be a true christian it is more important to act like one than to talk like one. A true christian does not have to constantly keep reminding the Cayman people that they are christians. Those type of Christians are the ones we must watch closely! You know, there are leaders in our country who pretend to be christians for political expediency, but the LORD knows & will punish that person "at the time & place of HIS choosing." To those, you may be King in this life, but the LORD knows the truth & will dethrone you in the next life (who the cap fit let them wear it.) DO NOT MOCK THE LORD! Yes I fully support the notion that Caymanians should go back to church.

  9. Anonymous says:

    In the swamp area alone there are 2 churches and another that’s building, mostly attended by non Caymanians, I really have to wonder what is the true reason for all these churches?!

    • Anonymous says:

      You and me both.  The district of BT has a substantial number of churches, and yet they building a next one already.  With less and less people going to church they keep building more…  about as logical as building a new cruise ship port when passenger numbers are dwindling!  I suspect the reasons for some of the many churches are purely for monetary gain (tax exemptions, etc.).  I know I am going to be slammed for saying this but… truth hurts eh?

    • Anonymous says:


  10. Anonymous says:

    Thank you, Premier

    Not everyone may agree to Christian principles in the Cayman Islands like McKeeva; however, the Premier has emphasized to us the great "moral usefulness" which churches and certain clubs, have contributed in the Cayman Islands.
    Other than a belief-system, churches have embedded in the hearts and minds of Caymanians, sacred principles of human dignity, fairness, compassion, fellowship, and respect for the elderly. Churches have served as a safe social ground for young teenagers to meet and people to socialize. Churches have emphasized that there is a God, a higher intelligence than us, which makes us humbled of the fact, and causes us to see that we all come from one Divine Source; thus, all human beings are one family, and thus, people should not discriminate and treat all with equality. Churches are outlets of charity not only for the poor, such like, the people in Hiati, but for the mentally ill and those in Her Majesty’s Prison.
    Yeah… you have fanatic, extrimists, and ministers who all they want to do is indoctrinate you in the church, but religion has its purpose when we USE it for our advantage!
    So…I can’t see why anyone would be against the Premier’s call for all Caymanians to go to church or at least visit one. Besides adopting a belief and filling people’s heads with a doctrine, a church is a part of the Cayman’s heritage – why do away with churches or go against them??? You don’t have to adopt a belief or faith, but by attending one, you can at least, show your support for the good things a church has to offer you and your family, especially, your children. Let’s not forget that the church is not an institution, it is the people.
    Maybe, the Premier in his speech should have NOT centered all of his speech on churches as the avenue for morality and ethics in society. There are certain clubs and groups, such as, yoga, et cetera… on the Island, as well that helps in our spiritual development and the development of our young children. 
    Moreover, (I say this with conviction) I personally believe that the spirituality of the people or a nation, do effect the economy and the rise of crime. You may not agree with me, but I think the Premier’s call is timely.
    • Dred says:

      A message is only as good as the person delivering it. If it wants togain credance then the deliverer will be under as much scrutiny as the message itself.

      In this case the message is sound but the deliverer is in question.

      McKeeva is for McKeeva. Always has been always will be. The day he converts I believe hell will freeze over twice simultaneously. The devil will confess and get saved.

      Anyone with a sound mind (i.e. not a UDP Zombie) finds themselves questioning everything he says and what he is really up to.

      Hope that makes my point.

      There is nothing in essence wrong with the text that I can see, although I did have a small chuckle when he said the part of "do unto others as you would have them do unto you". I wonder how that plays out against the backdrop of FirstCayman Bank and the savinsg lost by so many.

      I’m sitting back now trying to think of who on UDP team could have delivered this message properly. Has Mike been tainted as yet? Maybe Mike, maybe.

  11. Anonymous says:

    And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. And they marvelled at him.

  12. Pastor Bucket says:

    Cayman, free yourself from mental slavery!

    We know why quakes happen & people are gay, and it’s nothing to do with Sin

    You can be good without Church & you can stop lining the pastors pockets with your 10-15%

    It has always baffled me how easily Afro-Caribbean/African American/African non-white people are so happy to accept what was forced on them by slave masters via missionaries as "gospel"

    Racism & homophobia DECREASE when one becomes aware of our DNA connection, migration & WHY these people tell you what they do.

    Do you really want your kids to belive the moon is less than 2000 years old/ (thank Julianna for that gem)

    I "pray" for your youth Cayman – leave the church & get into the library



  13. Anonymous says:

    "Sitting in your church on Sunday
    Thinking who you gonna screw Monday
    Who you gonna tief
    Who you gonna rob

    Take it as me tell you seh you can’t fool God no

    By his deeds shall a man be known"

  14. Anonymous says:

    Just going to church doesn’t make you a Christian anymore than standing in your garage makes you a car !!!

  15. heavy cake says:

    MacBurger i think you need to be dipped a lil bit more in the water you do a lot of bad things to your country i don’t know how you and your fries get the heart to do it

  16. Richard Parson says:

     The last time I was in Cayman It looked like there were more people from other countries (like 5 to 1) than there were Caymanians.  Maybe that is why there are more of "them" in the Churches!

    • Anonymous says:

      5 to 1 eh, that means there must be 180,00 residents now, blimey

      Actually it’s still nearly 1 to 1, of course "them’ could also be tourists. Did you visit georgetown when 4 curiseships were in?


  17. Anonymous says:

    With Mac & Julianna as shining examples of Church members and what Christianity can do for you it is no wonder the Caymanian people are not flocking to Church – give it up Mac! Stop trying to play games with God!

  18. Anonymous says:

    Does the church have to be painted green or can we attend any church regards of the colour of the building?

  19. Anonymous says:



    The country is losing its faith… as it is losing its faith in you.

    The Golden Rule ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’.

    So does that mean the government will be paying for my full time chef/housekeeper as well?  Or maybe paying for me to live in a hotel room in the Brac (even though I own a house there)?

    What happen to practice what you preach?




  20. Renae Myles says:

     Caymanians has stop going to Church because of hypocritical church people that gossips about everyone as soon as they step in Church.  All you can hear after the Church is over is what number just played?  Then these so call Church people want to gang up with petitions to stop every single business from building our economy up.  They all need to get wash with the holy water first, and repent before they talk bad about anyone.  Then the rest of Caymanians can feel great about coming back to Church.

    • Go to Church says:

      The only Hypocrite is you, to disregard your good heritage and balf at good advice only because of political motivation is hypocrital. We go to Church for our own benefit not for someone elses’, you are a prime example of how far our people has declined.

      • Anonymous says:

        Our people has declined because we don not have a college education.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Stop singing at every public event! Go to Church and sing or Cayman Idol.  What other leader of a country sings at nearly every event? The spotlight is on me….

  22. Anonymous says:

    When all caymanians become rich like you, then  we will go back to CHURCH.

  23. Branch Dividian says:

    Serioulsy Mac Daddy? This is the best you can come up with? Don’t think it might have something to do with the sheer volume of "churches" in the strip malls, on the grass piece, everywhere you turn? These little money making schemes are a clear result of everyone not getting their cut from the bigger, more established "churches". "I need my money now". "You not getting any, it’s all for me". "Screw you then, I’ll open my own "church" down the road since there are no regulations or fees in place to stop me and keep all the cash for myself".

    • Anonymous says:

      Yea and dont forget that they all try to get work permits for more foreigners too even when there are Caymanians in their congregation who are willing and able to do the job!

  24. Sir Henry Morgan says:

    Caymanians tell Bush to go back to school.

  25. Anonymous says:

    CNS: Where is the storey about colour controversy of the decorations surrounding heroes day? What happened was an outrage and is further evidence of a dictorship in the making.

    • Barret says:

       Darn where did u learn to spell?  lol

    • Anonymous says:

      Spelling aside, this commentor makes a very good point. I think it was absolutely ridiculous to change the colour scheme in order to further promote the UDP at a national event. Doesn’t this man understand the country comes BEFORE the party? (Rhetorical, of course, as this man sees himself before the party before the country…)

    • Anonymous says:

      Even the programme was done in UDP colors, yet this was a Cayman Islands event paid for by government, NOT THE UDP! This is thievery & wrong! The udp must not use government money to promote the udp! That is criminal!

    • Anonymous4 says:

      Some people may not know what you are referring to but I will enlighten them.  There was suposed to be a red carpet but he insisted that it be taken up because it’s "PPM colors".  How childish.

  26. Inevitable says:

    The best thing that the Christian community in Cayman can do is abandon American inspired fundamentalist nonsense such as creationism.  This pathetic and modern dogma drive intelligent people away from the church because it is so patently nonsense.  I can accept that Genesis sets out an ancient creation myth.  But if you tell me it is what happened then I am less inclined to listen to you about the rest of the set text.

    When the churches here accept the Big Bang and evolution, as my churchdid when I lived in another country, then I may return.

    • Kermit says:

      Remember God is only a theory, and one with no evidence to back it up.

    • Anon says:

      neither are proven so who gives a hoot… Fact is the earth was created/developed somehow and now we’re here and now we’re screwed yaaaaay

      • Chuck Darwin says:

        The science has proven evolution as a scientific fact a long time ago by many different routes.  Anyone who says otherwise has not looked at the science.

  27. Anonymous says:

    Cayman has been going to church religiously (pun intended) since the beginning of time – does he think the recent falling in numbers are that those same people are not going?

    Perhaps it is that those that went are dying and the young aren’t going to replace the elderly in numbers. 

    How is one going to pull these violent offenders off the street and into a church?   

    Maybe Cayman should use a twist onthe  legal expression for this campaign to get people in Church 

    Churches of Cayman "throw the book at them" before the legal system does.

  28. Dred says:

    You first!!!


    • MonkeySee says:

      Isn’t it great to live in a free country where you can comment on things you know nothing about?

      The Premier faithfully attends his church of preference in WB.  He also does hands on work for the community through that church. 

      Ignorance is bliss! And i mean yours Dread, not the Premier’s!

      • Anonymous says:

        since you are aware that the premier has his hands on work for the community,why dont you suggest to him to donate ONE MILLION of his money to education (college fund)so that caymanian children of color can recieved a higher education, our children of color don’t need religion instead we need higher education.

        • nonsense says:

          Is that just for "Caymanian children of color", any Caymainan child, or any child?

          I sincerely hope you don’t intend to now segregate Caymanians by color of their skin as well as # of generations on island.

          • Anonymous4 says:

            Thank you 15:56.  We have enough division.  Now we want to divide Caymanians further.  Let us not go down that road. 

          • Anonymous says:

            No that was not my intention,religion has been the Glass ceiling for caymanians of color because our forefathers was only interested in church not education compare to other caribbean islands.

            • Dred says:

              We are all one people. I have never heard the term Caymanians of color. Where did you ever dig this up?

              The only termed division has been the paper Caymanian Vs the true Caymanian. This too is even blurred today as many of us have mixed roots at one level or another in our family tree.

              So please stop spreading garbage around. Creating issues where there are none.

          • Fed up Caymanian says:

            I know thats right…tell it like it is…what’s next?  They now want to segregate Caymanians now from each other…soon they will want us to all go to war against one another, and trust me politicts will surely make it happen, because, we are always down each others throats all the time,and everything seems to be about politics these days. 

        • FreeofReligionCaymanian says:

          I 100% agree with everyone AGAINST Mr. Bush’s idea of Preaching from his political pulpits and everyone in Cayman needs to wake up because if any country has proven that religion, specifically Christianity does not work is this country – afterall, since we are a Christian country with Christian values why is crime on the increase with Generation X? the products of a supposedly Christian generation?

          In fact the opposite has always been said and is so true, and goes something like this; "Any society that is religion based is creatively stymied" – we are living proof that Christianity only equals Capitalism.

          For those in favor of Church please read the history on Catholicism (which you can thank for Christianity) and what the people in Italy were made to believe about Jesus’ so called second coming…it was during Charlamagne’s reign – they were told that they didnt need their property because Jesus was coming, but the Church needed it. BTW if money is the root of all evil, why are churches wanting your money?

          Think Cayman – time to open your eyes about Christianity.

          • Dred says:

            I don’t want you to take me wrong. I am for religion. I am a christian at heart but like everything in life they have their time and place.

            My problem is when I have Pastor playing politics and politians playing pastors. Neither of these two in life mix.

            Pastors in Cayman need to seriously step back and take a look at what they are doing and ask themselves are they not judging people and if it is their place to do such things. Has God REALLY called them to try to dictate the laws of man or save mankinds spiritual beings.

            Me personally I believe the Pastors are as lost or even more lost than most of us.

            Now as for Big Mac he is doing what he knows how to do. He plays his flute well and the rats run to him. He is a master piper and has been for his whole career.

            So no. I don’t hate christianity but I don’t like to see where it’s going and they talk about we are being punished for what we are doing and I tell you maybe we are being punished because ofwhere we are being lead and maybe who’s leading us.

            Keep in mind that many cults had their roots in religion of one kind or another. Religion is not about anyone personal agendas but the work of God. Get back to saving souls and steer away from trying to create laws and judging people.

          • Anonymous says:

            Good point dont forget slaves who were brought here from africa were not christains,cayman read your history

        • Don't 4get Me! says:

          The solution would be for him to take a fraction of that time and try actually running the country. You know, like he’s being paid to do.  Choosing to attend church services is my decision …

        • Anon says:

          Nice one! too bad when Caymanian youth get their college education and come back and apply and interview their hearts out they can’t get the job cause the company they’d interviewed with is applying for another persons work permit even though on the advert they were "requesting" caymanians to apply hmmm not bitter at all lol

      • Dred says:

        You sound like one of those people who can’t see past the fridge you got in 2000.

        Well he does that for a reason. It’s called VOTE getting.

        Just take a look at any politician in the world today. They are "model" citizens. Yet so many of them are worse than me and you. Who isn’t taking money under the table is sleeping around with anything and anyone, yet still they are always there on Sunday for church.

        A classic indication was his getting up in front of his church members and telling them he’s changing Pirates Week. He knew what they wanted to hear so he told them just that.

        Aaah sometimes it’s better to keep quiet my friend and thought a fool than to speak up and remove all doubt.

        Big Mac plays his cards well. He has been a Politician this long by being stupid. In fact when it comes to street smarts he has no equal I believe. But an Angel he is not nor dare I say ever will be.

        What I meant was to REALLY go to church unlike so many of us who show up only to be seen. That’s what I meant. GO TO CHURCH not SHOW UP IN CHURCH.

        You are still a very green and blinded grasshopper to life.