Premier defends church grant

| 11/04/2013

jocc.JPG(CNS): The premier has denied allegations of vote buying in relation to a Nation Building Fund grant given to the church she sometimes attends in Red Bay. Juliana O’Connor-Connolly said Thursday that the Church of God Holiness was one of ten churches that received a grant from the fund during this fiscal year and the amount had been signed off by the previous premier last year. The delay in payment was because scholarship and vocational training grants took priority and the churches had to wait to get their grants. While stating that it was McKeeva Bush, using his discretion, who had granted the $100k to that churches as well as grants to nine others, the current premier said she fully supported the fund.

However, O’Connor-Connolly said that the resulting backlash following the reports had deeply hurt the congregation, and church officials were now considering giving back the money, despite the desperate need for the grant.

Speaking at Thursday’s press briefing, in which the issue took centre stage, the premier read the original letter from the Red Bay Church to the former premier requesting cash from the fund to assist with a leaky roof and the re-paving of car-parks. The premier said that Red Bay had needed $150,000 but in the end the former premier signed off on $100,000 because of the limited budget.

She did not name the other nine churches that were recipients of grants during this financial year but she confirmed that all of the information would be released via the freedom of information requests that have all now been filed.She confirmed that one of the nine was a church on Cayman Brac in her constituency, but CNS understands it was not the premier’s local church.

O’Connor-Connolly sought to explain the circumstances around the grant and said that the donation to the Red Bay Church and the others had all been approved by the former premier "at his discretion”.

But in regards to the comments and the wider community response to the story which appeared on CNS on Monday, the premier denied any impropriety and pointed to the heavy scrutiny which this budgethad been subject to, which included the cash allocated to the Nation Building Fund. 

O’Connor-Connolly stated that, when the new Cabinet took over as a holding government, the members had agreed to honour the commitments which the previous premier had made because the churches had been informed that they would be receiving their grants.

“We took the position that we would honour the commitments made,” she said, adding that all new applications were to be shelved until after the election for the next government to deal with.

The premier suggested that it would have been far worse if the interim government had refused to honour commitments made by the previous premier to churches in need, especially as the cabinet members all supported the principle of fund.

She said she was well aware how seriously and how upset the church members were about what has happened, not least because the church was well known for never asking for money, and the elders were contemplating returning the grant as they still believed the blessings would come.

The premier said she did not mind the criticisms and being the “sacrificial lamb” because she had followed through on a commitment already approved, but she felt upset for the congregation. She said the Red Bay Church of God Holiness was not the sort of church that wants the Lord’s name destroyed and strong consideration was being given, despite the pressing need for the grant, to “give back the cheque and wait on the Lord to provide".

The premier said she was not ashamed of the religious affiliations and the people of Cayman Brac had elected her to office knowing she was a Christian woman, and she was not going to change policies because it was politically correct.

“If they want to take political stabs at me for doing what is right, I apologise, but I will always do what is right,” she said.

The timing of the announcement, she said, was as a result of the chain of events, with the government taking office and the need to deal with scholarships first so students would not get locked out of class.

The next stage, she said, was vocational training funding to try and get those people back into training. She said that her ministry had spent a significant amount of time trying to deal with an application for a grant from a computer training centre, which was still not resolved as there were questions about how funds had been allocated, and she was not prepared to dispense funds until all those issues were cleared up. The premier added that by the time the office got around to sorting out the funds for the churches it was already March. 

She also revealed that in total the Nation Building Fund had received applications for more than $800,000 from churches, but the previous premier had to cut that down to $500,000, otherwise the fund would have exceeded its budget allocation. O’Connor-Connolly pointed to a refusal of another application from a church which had already received significant funds from government.

The premier said there were several more applications to the fund from other churches, which would now have to wait until the next administration before they received any cash.

Related article:

JOCC gives church 100k

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Category: Politics

Comments (115)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The real scandal is that she only needed less than 800 votes to become Premier of 55,000 people. I'm tired of maintain Cayman Brac with their special treatment via fuel and duty subsidies. Time for them to pay just like the rest of us. No more special interest groups!!!

  2. Anonymous says:

    In other words I am just as smart as Bush but still smarter then all you voters.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Thanks goodness for CNS where the public can berate the CIG and its leadership for their debacles, and do so safely.  I am so grateful that we have a voice now, while before we needed to "take it" in silence.  The creation of CNS might actually lead to democracy, and (say it quietly) maybe effective government some day.

  4. Catcha Fire says:

    How can you defend the undefendable? Only in Cayman can such an illegitimate government be installed and run by illegitimate people and the problem is not them now but those who installed them have loss their legitimacy along with their credibility. Just like some recent appointees who have been the bane of the civil service and installed like minded "partners" to high positions within the service. Can now be touted for their knowledge and experience to make judgements and decision over the civil service it is both a farce an unethical.But only in Cayman can such things take place.It is said that you must find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have the exact measure of the injustice and wrong which will be imposed on them.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Don't stop the carnival!

  6. Cowitch says:

    The Government has a clear obligation to first and foremost provide basic community services for our tax dollars. 

    They haven't collected my trash in over a week

    They have unilaterally reduced civil servant salaries by 3%

    They have made huge cuts in their support of public entities (such as the National Trust) therbye massively crippling their work. 

    Yet they have money to throw this way and that at Churches?  Could $150,000 given most recently to churches have been better spent on garbage trucks? Could $100,000 given to a loud mouthed, UDP supporting boxer be better spent on scholarships and school programs? 

    Suggestion for a new poll: Do you think Cayman would be betterserved with:

     a) Juju and onterage attending a Postal conferance in the Middle East,

    or b) Buying a new garbage truck? 

    That is our money, not MB's not JuJu's, and definitely, not Killer's!

     

     

     

  7. Anonymous says:

    It looks to me like PNA and UDP are still one of the same; they are just playing us for fools.  I say that because she had really broken away, do you think she would have honoured something like that?  Hell no.  PNA and UDP still the same thing.  Vote everyone associated with UDP out on May 22nd!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Theft, pure and simple.  I hope the police investigate her next.

  9. Blindman says:

    I can clearly see that she is still carrying on the squandering of our country''s money and continues to follow in the footsteps of the X-premier who's now facing charges of 11 counts of thefts

    Her actions are now surfacing, with no one to hide behind

    I thought she at the very least, had the rare common sense to make her own decisions and prudent judgement.

    She need to invest in our students that are seeking assistance in obtaining university education.

    What she is doing is equivalent of buying favor, specifically during an election year.

    In my opinion, she should be penalised and made to step down.

    Julianna, youuuuuuu  needda go!!

  10. SKEPTICAL says:

    It would be interesting to see the phone records of JU JU and bush, to see how many times they have called each other since bush was removed as Premier, by the Governor.

    • Anonymous says:

      All phone bills paid for by govt money should be considered public records so we should be able to FOI that info quite easily.

    • Lewis says:

      Not just phone bills but check emails. Ooops I forgot , the fuzz have his computere.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I am having very serious doubts that religion and christianity in Cayman will ever survive the daily onslaughts of our beloved christian leaders.

  12. Anonymous says:

    The profile of this woman XXX continues to astound me. What a total disgrace she is. The contribution she made in the 2003 controversial 3000+ caymanian status grant awards,  use of public funds for free road paving in the Brac, and now monies to the churches are enough for a public outcry. We the public should demand her removal from public office pronto!!!

     

     

    • Anonymous says:

      What suprises me is that the good people of Cayman put up with such inadequate leaders. She was a disgrace as a globe trotting minister. She let the HealthMinister deal with the Dart carve up of the West Bay Road when roads were her responsibility.And what about her Deputy. He was drunk and driving a woman he claimed not to know around in the early hours. He crashed his car ( not the first time, he had fallen asleep driving in West Bay some months before). He lied to the police. He wasted the Courts time by initially pleading 'not guilty'. Why did organisations that care about road safety or young people or drug abuse etc. not call out for him to resign? Why did schools and colleges continue to invite him to functions instead of "shouting out" for him to resign? He prayed beforechanging his plea, at the eleventh hour to "guilty" (perhaps because the expert witness from the States would have demonstrated in open court that the was no validity in his story of why his alcohol reading was so high). So let us pray that in May we do the right thing and, for the sake of Cayman, the Premier and her Deputy are not returned as MLA's

       

       

  13. Anonymous says:

    The profile of this woman (girth included) continues to astound me. What a total disgrace she is. The contribution she made in the 2003 controversial 3000+ caymanian status grant awards,  use of public funds for free road paving in the Brac, and now monies to the churches are enough for a public outcry. We the public should demand her removal from public office pronto!!!

     

     

  14. Bono says:

    Paul any comment?      Running with the devil and all that?

  15. Anonymous says:

    Miss Julies goal in life is to have a statue of herself and maybe an airport or highway named after her so she is eternally remembered.

  16. Anonymous says:

    The Nation Building Fund in itself is not a problem entirely but like everything else has to be set in place at the right time and now is not it.  Church members should take the responsibility through offering, personal donations etc. in building their church buildings not relying on the Govt. to do so.

    The problem I have with this issue is simply this- it's not a matter of being a Christian (I am one) it is the fact that if you are placed in the position to assist a country, one's decision making must consist of the most rational solutions for the country's best interest.  We all know that right now our country is faced with great economic pressures.  There are many other pressing needs right now.  Priority must prevail.

  17. Anon says:

    Dont Vote For Her…or John John, or Mark, or Rolston or Cline Glidden.

    The are all cut from dirty cloth and pretending to now be clean.

    Juju is not exactly Lilly White.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Remember after the money reaches the churches, it cannotbe traced. The biggest money laundering scam in the world. it happens in the churches, especially those that don't do community services. XXXX

     

     

  19. Anonymous says:

    She is a disgrace. I am embarrassed to even call her the Premier. I cannot wait till next month.  I hope Cayman will finally wake up and elect people of character and restore some sanity and pride to our home country.  No moreChristians pleeeeeease!!!!   

    • Anonymous says:

      Why cant these people just be honest???? Just speak the truth, thats all we ask!

      Seems to me that the only reason Julie ousted Mac was so she could take over to do same crap.

      Cayman Brac and West Bayer voters please give the country a break from these two. Please.!!!!!!!!!!

       

       

    • Anonymous says:

      Would some one please tell her to wear her glasses on her face and not her head. Being the leader of this proud country, she sure dressess sloppy.

    • Anonymous says:

      Actually, we need more REAL Christians.

  20. CYNICAL says:

    30 pieces of silver – CI$100,000. Suppose that is just an indication of inflationary trends.

  21. Just Commentin' says:

    Earth to Julie: Has God told you to simply shut your yap before you loose all credibility? If your answer is "no"  then you have not been listening! Regardless of your good intentions regarding the handouts, you must be smart enough to have known that public perception of the handouts would not be very positive.  You should have "abstained from all appearance of evil", and moreover, you should not have done something you knew would sully the reputation of the church and Christianity. What you did was a sin and you should be repenting and making apologies and amends rather than vainly trying to justify your actions.

    "The people of Cayman Brac had elected me to office knowing I am a Christian woman". Gee, you're pretty good if you can fool  Cayman Brackers like that.  Just give up hiding behind the mask of Christianity! It is wearing thin. No one can tell me that an otherwise sane "Christian" woman (or man) would have never aligned herself with Bush in the first place.  Neither would an intelligent person have done so. Which do you plea? Insanity? Moron? Or heathen? It was not until Bush had almost wrecked the country you claim to love so much and was finally arrested  that you gave people the impression that you woke the hell up and jumped ship. However, I am not so sure now that you woke up at all. I am not so sure now that  this is not all just a ploy to get people to believe that you and your team are estranged from Bush just to get votes and get reelected and then rejoin him so he can get back into power. 

    You are sounding more and more like your mentor Bush every time you open your mouth. You are becoming quite adept at stonewalling and invoking the name of God to justify your poor leadership and poor choices.   XXXX I am just trying to wrap my head around the foolishness you are doing. I actually liked you a lot but am now beginning to regret ever giving you any support.

    Here is an admonition for the Bible that I would suggest you do a scholarly study on and delve into in some depth because I am of the opinion that you have entirely missed the practical application of the 4th Commandment and its meaning and interpretation. The true meaning and intent has less to do with profanity and all to do with the ways you have been misusing His name for excuses and personal aggrandisement.

  22. Anonymous says:

    One thing for damn sure, the silence on this matter coming from Mr. Kearney Gomez et al is deafening, yet sadly not in the least surprising. Their previous governmental and thus administrational relationship is not to be overlooked or ignored or covered up. The glaring hypocrisy evident in the "treating" campaign rules when compared to this situation is just another milestone in the road to even more trouble for the Cayman Islands.

     

    Another thing for damn sure, what JOCC and her predecessor of putridity have done is damage and undermine Christianity in the Cayman Islands. The bible says that those who do this are better off with a millstone tied around their neck. In my humble opinion, not even the most vehemently radicalized and militant atheist could do as much to undermine the concept and belief system of Christianity in this country. They have used Christianity as a political tool and a weapon to spread their lies, divide and conquer their own people, and to manipulate others for nothing but their own greed induced, wicked and evil purposes.

     

    These two individuals, and their partners in pestulence, are charlatans pure and simple, either that or their moral compass is absolutely nonexistent let alone skewed off kilter. The silence on this matter by any and all true men and women of God in this country is also deafening and it can and will be seen as either cowardice and/or complicity. Where is the minister's association on this issue? Where is the elections office on this issue?

     

    The threats to democracy in this country are real and present and the danger is to us all whether we are Christian or not. We have to demand better and demand accountability and consequence for this merry-go-round of malicious malarky thinly disguised and mis-appropriated as "nation building" by those for whom no level of decrepitude is too low to stoop in order to gain or retain an undeserved level of power and influence. These are those who are the naked emperors, the wolves in sheeps clothing, the biblical pit of vipers and, dare I say it, devil worshippers.

     

    For those who know Christ, they know that he did not nor would not condone this most underhanded of pollytrickal tactics. He would overturn their tables in a fit of rage as he did before, as it says in the bible. Christ was not a coward, silence in this matter is unacceptable, lest ye who profess to know Christ wish to reap the whirlwind, hold them accountable. I, you, we and they can run from the truth but it cannot be hidden from forever.

     

    We can forgive them but they have to be permanently disallowed from causing further division and damage to the Cayman Islands, the concept and implimentation of democracy, and our national identity as a country who (justifiably or not) touts itself as a country of Christian ideals and belief.

  23. Anonymous says:

    She is mendacity defined. Sad really.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Ju Ju speaks with a forked tounge.

     

    It is time for her to slither back under a rock.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Shame on you JuJu, you are showing your true colours but you are even worse than Mac because you try to say it was someone elses decision that you don't agree with but you facilitate this wrongdoing and waste of public money. 

  26. Anonymous says:

    I don't see any soup kitchens being operated by these churches. do they know how many people are out there starving.  Churches needs to do more within their communities, like operate an after school program, feed the hungry, visit the elders, provide moral support to families, help with the struggling, provide clothing to the poor and I mean right here in the Cayman Islands, not always overseas. They need to provide spiritual support to their communities, but they do not even do home visits, if they do..they do it when people are getting ready to attend their churches.  The churches are failing their communities, yet you JuJu and McKeeva are giving away our money to them?  I am puzzled….If the Churches proforms, the God will provide.

    • Anonymous says:

      The ministers need the money to buy those expensive purple shirts and collars. Those things are truly important to the community.

    • Anonymous says:

      Obviously you’re not well informed regarding churches that operate after school programmes and offer food pantries etc.

  27. Anonymous says:

    Her lips were moving.

  28. Anonymous says:

    I think the question here is not should the money have been given to the Churches but rather is it right to have a Public Fund, by whatever name, that can be dispensed at the whim of an individual. This is the Public's money and every cent of it should be dispensed through the relevant Government agency and only after the most thorough budgetary examination and approval by the Legislative Assembly.  

  29. Anonymous says:

    Dear Heavenly Father. Please deliver us from evil. Amen.

  30. Anonymous says:

    Great excuse Mac assigned the funds lol, we'll you didn't have to give your the boss lady now. Just say no, there are many more important things the 100k could have gone too. I really don't know why we are complaining about this woman, she's a Bracca and guess what dem Bracca's voted her in and they will do it again.

  31. Anonymous says:

    At the end of the day, the money that was given to these churches is completely unnecessary. Churches get enough money as it is. This money should have been awarded to schools, after school programs, educational funds, scholarship funds for young Caymanians who wish to study at a University level, a public health fund. That grant could have been spent on literally anything other than churches and it would have been far more accepted. 

    • Anonymous says:

      It is clear to me that she makes up her story as she goes along thinking that we are all fool fool. Her story is as water tight as pouring water in a sieve.

    • Annonymous!!! says:

      I hear you, at the end of the day. That money should have been given to programs that can assist our children, seniors and familiesThe churches get their money and hold on to it.

      There is so much that can be done in our community's if the churches would assist also. Take the after school programs, that is a good cause and could use some of that fund.

      Shame on them for offering it and thank God the churches finally saw the light and gave it back. Now lets see where they will try to put it .

  32. Anonymous says:

    Even if it was genuine, common sense tells you not to do it before and election where you are being watched so close, it says to me she's not very smart and maybe a bit arrogant to think she and do it, just like her former boss…

    • Anonymous says:

      I hope that the general publicremembers that aa LEOPARD CANNOT CHANGE ITS SPOTS.

       

      They may call themselves whatever they may, but they were all cut from UDP's cloth and beliefs!

  33. Anonymous says:

    She doesn't mind being the "sacrificial lanb" – honestly.  Who does she think she is.  Does she honestly not realise that she is giving much needed public funds away to a church which will not be accountable for those funds.  There are MANY MANY people struggling on a  daily basis.  HELP them – somebody.  Help them.  They need money for food, medication, clothing, etc. etc.  Stop wasting money on foolishness.  It is a disgrace

    • Anonymous says:

      Indeed 06.19…nothing like a lamb..more the animal of the large pink variety with its snout in the trough, and whats worse, this one can fly!

  34. Bono says:

    "The God I know isn't short of cash, mister"       A quote from Bono of U2

  35. Anonymous says:

    Is it not strange that just a short while ago she did not agree with the previous premier and help vote him out?  Now (because it is convenient for her) she selectively supports his decision.  It is as plain as day that it is vote buying.  This fund is distributed unevenly distributed to various churches but not all churches.  There is simpy no logic or process to this except for gainng votes.  At least one church feels it does not need this dirty money and has given it back, my hat goes off to them.  Why do we vote these politicians into power when they clearly think we are fools.  It is vote buying  – period.

  36. PHILO the Philosopher says:

    Has anyone noticed that as the number of churches increase so does crime. It seems to me that maybe " WE  SHOULD  PUT  A  MORATORIUM  ON  CHURCH  BUILDING" and see if  the crime rate drops.

    • Anonymous says:

      You went there. If you want to argue correlation then as the proportion of Christians to the general population has decreased crime has increased.

  37. Anonymous says:

    Money to churches is nothing but a racket. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Julianna is so shameless and is what the Word refers to when it says "the wheat and thorns shall grow together until the day of harvest" Cayman Brac do the Cayman Islands  a favour and harvest her out of government. She believes she is redeemed because she took the stance against Mac but it was 3 years too late. One don't complain that a meal wasn't palatable just before they finish it. If it didn't taste good, it is because it wasn't good. 

  38. Anonymous says:

    The vote building fund should not have been set up in the first place much less  given to the likes of Mac Bush and Julie paving to give out.

  39. Anonymous says:

    It could never be construed or described as vote buying however, in order to ‘reach’ a large number of people it isn’t too bad an idea to ‘contribute’ with the public’s money to a place many people attend. Such as a church. It would be ridiculous to call that vote buying. Who could quibble with giving to such a worthy thing as a church? Clever. And very transparent. Maybe the only transparent thing Bush did.

    • Anonymous says:

      No one is against contributing to the Lords work even those that twist the bible truth. However it is just vote buying and you cant term it any different. Just look at the timing, why didnt she give this out just after Paloma? On the other hand there are genuine needs of home repairs on the Brac that she XXXX would not address such as the home where she was born that was one of the most damaged house in Watering Place. Every Bracer talks about. Worst to even attend the funeral of the original owner celebrating his death in red and orange clothes and using her phone to take pictures of him being lowered into the grave. XXXX So many just stood by and watched in awe.

  40. Anonymous says:

    The special needs department at the Brac High School is in desperate need of supplies. Their budget cut and barely scraping by and this woman gives money to a Church here that has no after school,program, no youth program, she should be ashamed of herself.

  41. Anonymous says:

    "I didn't do it!"  easy cop out. Bowing to Mac again and his decisions like he was a god.
    Vote them out!!!

  42. Anonymous says:

    only in cayman could someone like ju ju be gauranteed re-election…..

    • Anonymous says:

      Let's sell off the Lesser Caymans.  It raises some revenue, gets rid of a drain on the public purse and JuJu is not an issue.  Everyone wins.

    • Anonymous says:

      Only in Cayman Brac or West Bay. 

  43. Anonymous says:

    Someone should ask John John who approved the payment before he gets thrown under the church bus.

  44. Anonymous says:

    Forgive me, but her story does not seem to match that of the Brac Church explanation of why they are giving it back….. They say they had NOT been promised the money by Bush…. She says they were honoring a commitment already made…. .??

    • Anonymous says:

      She is really professional at twisting her tongue, one of Cayman Bracs best educated tongue twister.

  45. Anonymous says:

    How can JOCC say she is a Christian and we are a Christian country when she pulls this kind of double speak.

    I hope the Red Bay Church makes the same decisions the Brac Church did, and gives the money back.  This is a Church that for years has acted like a true "Church of God".  To keep the money would be to redefine that image and switch their allegiance for God to the Almighty Dollar.

    • Anonymous says:

      The preamble is not the constitution. Technically we are NOT a Christian country as per the Constitution!

  46. Judean People's Front says:

    oooh ….. she's making it up as she goes along!

  47. Anonymous says:

    After careful consideration, I have concluded that the difference between Mac and Juli is that one is male and the other is female!

  48. Anonymous says:

    So julianna is very clearly and blatantly stating in very plain English that mckeeva bush is still running our country with eleven criminal charges to his credit? And that she can't possibly be doing wrong because mckeeva said it was right and if mckeeva says it is right it has to be right no matter what any body else says or thinks? Like giving Cohen $500,000.00 of our money no matter what anybody else says or thinks is right? Or like giving GLF $2,000,000.00 of our money no matter what any body else says or thinks is right? Or like giving his church $2,000,000.00 of our money no matter what any body else says or thinks is right? Or like selling our country and our people out to CHEC no matter what any body else says or thinks is right? Or like giving Dart…oh forget it. And yet she is apologising. Apologising for what, Cayman? Is she apologising for taking part in ousting mckeeva bush from our government, Cayman?  Is there starting to look like there might be some little thing wrong with this picture yet Cayman. Is it time that we start thinking about maybe electing a government to run our country in our best interests rather than being hell bent on destroying it and our people in their own blatantly blatant self interests come hell or high waters Cayman? Is it time to wake up yet Cayman?    

  49. Anonymous says:

    There is no point arguing about the details, there is no way the leader of a country should be able to give away money from the public coffers without oversight or transparency. It just should not be happening in any way, shape or form.

    Juliana should have closed the national building fund down so the money could be used to benefit the whole country instead of a select few.

    • Anonymous says:

      Close it down in an election year?? She was far too smart for that !!!

  50. Anonymous says:

    "The amount had been signed off by the previous premier last year". This appears to be an outright lie by the Premier.

    • Anonymous says:

      One thing for sure Julianna certainly had no loyalty to MACK. The only surprise I got was that she did not throw him out before.

      • Anonymous says:

        They will gladly embrace each other like long lost friends after the elections if it means they both get back in power.

    • Anonymous says:

      How DARE you. Our sister Ju is a good, Christian, God fearing lady with clean hands and a pure heart. Just like our forever honerable ex premier. Don't you understand those criminal police have concocted eleven criminal charges against him just so the UK and Governor Taylor can take his seat from him? How many millions of our money do you think these criminals are going to pay our corrupt police force for helping them take our forever honerable ex premier's seat from him? Do you really believe our sister Ju Ju spent five hundred thousand of our dollars paving everybody's driveways in Cayman Brac just so she could get re-elected? Or that she is giving our churches, who's God has apparently completely forsaken, hundreds of thousands of dollars just soshe can get re-elected? Or that our beloved God fearing forever honerable ex premier would ever think of giving his church two million of our money to get re-elected? No my friend. These are God fearing, forever honerable folks after God's very own heart and with clean hands and pure hearts. Shame on this world for trying so desperately to destroy them for all the good they have been to this country and our people. I shudder to think of what will become of all these donkey faced devil worshippers when they stand before Almighty on judgement day for trying to destroy God's chosen people. Did you also know that pigs fly? Wote themOUT Cayman.              

  51. PaperCaymanian says:

    I would like to hear the criteria for granting or denying the money. It would be a fun conversation.

  52. Anonymous says:

    May 22.

     

    I hope that sometime in the future that May 22 becomes a national freedom holiday.

     

    It will be if the voters oust the current generation of corrupt stooges and let some ethical light shine down on these islands.

    • Anonymous says:

      We wont be free dear heart. Julianna has already won the Election,only we dont know if she is placing second again. I hope not as I dont want to hear her trembling and crying voice on the radio again. She is so desperate to have power that she is already offering to work with others that she has no likeness for. It is much better if you step down now and get the Premiers pension rather than getting the backbench pension. People will be leaving the Island if you are returned to Government in power.

  53. Anonymous says:

    Fire these abominations, Cayman.

  54. Anonymous says:

    Don't rejoice, so-called people of God. You have gone a whoring from your God. Every time you hold a service, you need to take up an offering – Hosea 9-1

    A man cannot serve 2 masters, he will either love one and hate the other. You cannot serve God and money.

    My house shall be called a house of prayer, but you have turned it into a den of thieves.

    Sell all that you have, give to the poor and come and follow me. You will have great treasures in heaven.

    Seek God's kingdom first and the righteousness associated with it and He will give you freely the things that the Gentiles strive for.

    Maybe Church is just a place to go to get your ears tickled?

    If righteousness abounded in our churches, we would see the same miracles that followed the early believers. As it is, perfectly turned out folk show up, someone sings a special, a collection (or two) is taken and someone speaks for an hour on 2 or 3 scriptures.

     If you are really lucky, you'll get some food. A few hugs later, a shake of the pastor's hand and that's it for another week, conscience eased and then back to fornicating, gluttony, drunkenness, vanity, pride and general dishonesty. I am just as guilty as the next person.

    I think we should just be honest and ask God to help us all.

     

  55. Anonymous says:

    Who is the “we” that ……”decided to honour the comments nets made” ?

  56. Anonymous says:

    $150K for a leaky roof? You mean a new roof, a new parking lot, a new car for the Pastor and a bonus to the Pastor six figure salary. What happen to some of these funds going to the Elderly and Seaman who are living below the poverty line? Shouldn't some of these funds to go to them to assist in amending their living conditions? Some of which occurred because of Ivan.

    • ThIs WrItInG Is VeRy IrRiTaTiNg says:

      If churches can not afford to survive on the contributions from their memebers they should close up shop.  How is this any different than any for-profit business that can't pay it's bills?  Businesses fail for one reason or another all the time.  Look how many restaurants and retail establishments come and go each year.  The government should not be responsibile for bailing out ANY failing business.

  57. The lone haranguer rides again! says:

    As thick as thieves, they do not even recognize what corruption is anymore, it is almost pathological, we need to change them all out and send a few to jail to keep the new one’s honest, crooks most of them.

  58. Anonymous says:

    What a load of crap. It’s vote buying. She knows it, we know it. Where does smoke & mirrors politicking stop and downright dishonesty start Ms Premier? Do you even know the difference? The whole concept of trying to normalise the handing out of large sums of cash “at discretion” to anybody, church orotherwise, is an insult to anyone with more than half a brain.

  59. Anonymous says:

    Donations of public purse money to Churches are wrong in principle and that is it, end of storey. It is why it does not happen in real countries, because it can be misconstrued as vote buying, which is exactly what it is here. Lets call it… , yes its a duck, with feathers and all.

  60. Anonymous says:

    Praying for a safe and crime free island doesn't seem to be working. How about more money for the police force?

  61. ThIs WrItInG Is VeRy IrRiTaTiNg says:

    “If they want to take political stabs at me for doing what is right, I apologise, but I will always do what is right,” 

    So paving private parking lots and driveways with public funds is considered "right" in her mind?  It will be interesting to see if the Auditor General and the Anti-Corruption Committee share the same view.

    • Anonymous says:

      An approach eerily similary to McKeeva's self-righteous 'I am right – everyone else is wrong' approach. 

      Scary…

    • Anonymous says:

      Perhaps if Representatives for your constituency did more to develop your community it wouldn't seem so wrong. By the way, the program was open to the public via an application process. Citizens who expressed their demand via application were granted their request according to the requirements.

       

      Furthermore, the major road infrastructural improvements benefits residents of all three islands and visitors alike. The roads are the property of the Cayman Islands; now and for generations to come, long after us alive now, are passed away. For those who, either never knew or have conveniently forgotten, prior to Ms. Juliana O’Connor-Connolly being elected to office, the Brac had mainly marl roads particularly on the bluff and the paved roads were prone to flooding and or in a poor condition.

       

      Too often some people in Grand Cayman fail to recognize that while Grand Cayman has always taken the Lion’s share and has prospered with development, the people of Cayman Brac and Little Cayman have had to make do with what they had. (I dare to say that residents in all our districts have had to do without particularly the eastern districts of Bodden Town, East End, and North Side. However, because of the geographical location of these districts, residents of Grand Cayman can more easily move about and enjoy the development of Grand Cayman.) What the Brac and Little Cayman had would be considered scarce or below the poverty line in many developed countries.

       

      Now that Grand Cayman seems to be in a desperate condition, whether on a whole or on a scale that affects more middle-class and upper-class people, the squeeze is being felt and manifested in public dialogue. Cayman comes from a history of poverty. We made the best with what we had. This nonsense, chaos, and political rhetoric being spread by people who know better and many times people who have political interest and aspirations is by no means productive. No matter how much you spin rhetoric it is just words.

       

      Cayman doesn’t have an economic problem that can’t be solved. It doesn’t have a problem that can be solved by voting out all the Caymanians of this past term and putting in new Caymanians. Indeed we live in a Democracy, a healthy one at that and the opportunity is always there for us to vote out Members of the Legislative Assembly, normally every four years. However, the problem that the Cayman Islands have is that we are severely lacking love. We lack charity. We lack a love for our neighbours. Until we stop amidst the haste of our technologically involved lives and stand straight, look at ourselves in the mirror and ask ourselves what can I do to make the Cayman Islands a better place, we will all live like soldier crabs in a barrel!

       

      Pick any elected official or person and even a child can throw stones at them and pull them down. What do you get from pulling people down and attacking the character of your fellow Caymanian and or global citizen? Seek to build up yourself. Seek to support and build up other people. Think about what you say before you say it. Stop spreading curses and black magic through evil words. Think about what you are talking about and why you are talking about it. What does it mean to you? If you choose to debate an issue, presented by the media, pause and think about the private interest(s) involved in the publishing of the story. Could such interest(s) have affected the view or stance of the author?

       

      Nothing is innately wrong with the media. Having free and open media in our country is a privilege. However, don’t blindly accept anything published by the media. Most if not all are acting according to the rules of the capitalist system with the interest of making profit. They have no moral or factual authority. You need to be the judge and producer of your thoughts and actions. You are responsible for your destiny. Your thoughts and actions can affect people around you.

       

      Almost every election people promote the idea that this is the most important election in our history. The country will be ruined if we do not vote change. You know within yourself that not all change is good. Change can be necessary but contemplate who is asking you to change the elected officials and who they are suggesting you vote for as replacements. If you deem change to be necessary; investigate the new candidates and old candidates who are trying for another chance and determine whether they are genuine people. Have you seen or heard of them before. What have they done for Cayman or you in their personal lives? What do they propose and promise to do if elected? Make an educated and independent decision.

       

      Your vote is yours. You don’t owe it to anyone and you should not let anyone buy it. Respectful debate is good but don’t fall into the trap of consuming your time with negative comments either on websites or on the radio. God bless this country and the people who choose to live here and visit its shores.

  62. Anonymous says:

    Church is a person! The body is the Temple not a building!

    The Bible speaks for these things DO NOT concern yourselves with things of the world….This is against the word of God! These buildings are not churches but rather organizations that pay people and have financial statements, annual meetings and board members; your “pastors” are HIRELINGS!!! Search your Bibles and know the truth.

  63. Citizen says:

    The 19 daughters of Mother Gowernment! 18 left to go –  but 1 is handing back to mother her grant of 200,000 dollars. Imagine 4 millions tax-payer's dollars to 19 daughters, giving away 200,000 each to them. The same Gowernment complaining about its broke and need austere measures whilst "we" meaning the entire country have to put up with the rising cost of living and debt! 19 Churches with lets say (guessing but should be more) 200 people each. So that means to calculate 3000 votes and we are not including family members with ties outside these churches. The UDP / post UDP parties… meanwhile, McKeeva is visiting churches, Ellio Solomon recently got baptized some weeks ago at Pastor's Clarke church so I heard. These churches teach about paying your tithe, 10% of your salary every month for the cause of God, and here are these MLAs donating more than 4 million for the cause. Last time I spoke to one of those Church members they had so many nice things to say about McKeeva. What puzzles me is – since when have you seen a country's economy boosted by giving money to churches?  I don't get it. Strange. Cayman, we talk about corruption all we want, but spiritually speaking I dare say, something is radically wrong with this picture. How can the Premier defend it?

    • Anonymous says:

      Helium Boy got baptised?

      Does this mean he has closed down his bar?

      Looks like the UDP is now Unselfish, Devout, Pious!

  64. Anonymous says:

    I think the gist of the answer seems to be "We don't just buy votes at this church.  We are buying votes at another 9 churches too".

  65. Frank says:

    Why is the government funding churches when they are flat ass broke??? Churches are not a government entity, it is not benefiting the local economy and the public are NOT responsible for financially supporting them. The money should be used to support suffering small business'  and promotion of Cayman rather than being pumped into churches. One other question also is who audits these churches to find out where this money is being spent? If any other company or individual is in recept of government funding im sure this is a must.

  66. Anonymous says:

    Foolishness. Vote buying at its rankest state. Ju Ju knows better and should be ashame of herself.

    • Anonymous says:

      I am sure she does know better.  Equally I am sure she has not one iota of shame.

  67. Anonymous says:

    Vote buying, plain and simple, no matter what the lies are of this disgrace or the former disgrace of a premier. You dont decide by yourself who gets public funds, the other idiot did that and look where he is now.

  68. Anonymous says:

    Did the afterschool government run programm get any assistance that it asked for.  If so, how much as they had to cut down their programm to 4 days instead of 5 .I am sorry but that is why churches  have collection boxes every Sunday. Have a seperate collection for the buidling fund as  I know some churches do to raise money. Again mis use of power to give where she felt like giving. Churches can help them self they pay no taxes so why should they get "free" money.

    Give the money to the depeprate people out of jobs now or help families to get into homes or something that benefits a portion of soceity and not one small sector

  69. Anonymous says:

    Nothing Ju Ju has ranted on about here makes this crap in the least bit more justifiable. We exorbitant tax payers are in desperate need of a grant too Ms. O'connor-Connolly. You and McKeeva Bush were elected to serve the people of this country, NOT the churches of your choice. Don't these churches have an almighy God that they pray to every day? Has he gone completely deaf? If so it seems they would be better off closing their doors forever.

  70. Cheese Face says:

    I've got a leaky roof and could use my drive paved too, wheres my cash you vote buying ****s?

  71. Anonymous says:

    Anyone in the next administration who gives out money through the nation building fund will be a major disappointment. It needs to be abolished. Grants from Government to non-profits should go through a properly vetted process within departments to be as fair as possible and only if the country can afford it. 

  72. Anonymous says:

    What is happening to the $50,000 that was allegedly hand delivered to a Cayman Brac church by the premier at the begining of service on Easter Sunday morning??

  73. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for clearing the air JOCC. So for the simple minded…it was not signed off by JOCC. It was Big Mac's doing. It was all in stone before he got ousted. kapeesh?

    • Anonymous says:

      Kapeeshit.

    • Anon says:

      I'm quite sure the amount of thumbs down to your comment will be of a high number because the simple minded idiots didn't wait to get the facts before they started accusing the woman of all kind of shit and lets not forget the time spent on the Brac bashing. Unbelievable! Maybe the next time some of these wicked people should stand at the edge of a cliff or the bluff when they're ready to jump to foolish conclusions.

    • Anonymous says:

      Even if you take everything JOCC said as true and this was all approved last year, back the truck up to last year and ask yourself who put this Church's request in front of McKeeva, who had a word in his ear and said, 'that's my church', they should be one of the chosen to receive money?

      Being a little more skeptical I think it goes like this, you know who's got control of the purse strings and that they are using the pot of money to curry politcal favour, you approach this individual and 'promote' your church, it will cost you some payback later to ask, or maybe it's a reward for something already done.  So the man says sure, have $100k, but the man gets ousted before he can hand over the money, but joy, they give you the whole purse and clear your debt as well..

      So now you can hand out the money you asked for and blame it on the guywho was ousted.

      Sound familiar? Maybe not simple enough, huh.

  74. Anonymous says:

    So what about the Home Repairs Programe that the former Premier launched and of which a Committee had been formed to review the applications???  Nothing more has been heard or said about this?

    • Anonymous says:

      There is no good of her forming a committe when she will control them anyway.

      • Anonymous says:

        She doesn't control anyone. She doesn't own a business, unlike the other elected member for Cayman Brac and Little Cayman and she has no power over hiring or firing civil servants.

         

  75. M says:

    "However, O’Connor-Connolly said that the resulting backlash following the reports had deeply hurt the congregation and church officials were now considering giving back the money despite the desperate need for the grant."  Dumb!  The money never belong to unna in the first place!  The church officials who accepted this cash don't know what the KINGDOM OF GOD is… I am sorry they don't have any idea what God's kingdom is all about!