|‘We can make it if we try’ – Aug 17|
REGENERATING THE MORAL AND SPIRITUAL VALUES OF OUR SOCIETY
By Vernon Khelawan
Now that Archbishop Joseph Harris has received the plans for the implementation of the Third Pastoral Priority – Regenerating the Moral and Spiritual Values of Our Society, there is hope that these plans will soon get going across the Archdiocese.
For months I have been trying to keep the Priority as a priority, especially since the more you look around, the more you see the great need for us as Church to do something about our society’s declining values – both spiritual and moral.
These plans have been put together by parishes, schools, religious communities, Church ministries and commissions, as well as the various departments. The complete spectrum of the local Church is covered and so the benefits should be widespread.
I was reminded last weekend just how gigantic is the task to restore moral and spiritual values in the society. As I sat in the departure lounge of the ANR Robinson International Airport in Tobago, I became convinced that our people no longer take pride in the way they dress. So you enjoyed a day at Pigeon Point or Store Bay wearing clothing appropriate for the beach, but then it’s time to board a plane for the trip back home. You can wear your beach attire home if you are travelling in your private vehicle but not on an airplane journey, short as it may be! This displays a total lack of respect for the people of Tobago and your fellow passengers.
Today, culture is cited in defence of anything that is contrary to proper societal norms. The immediate response of someone who is challenged on their attire or behaviour or manner of speaking is: “Buh, dah is we culture.”
Have you noticed that even the menus of the foreign food franchises have become “our culture”!
And while it may be difficult to envisage any great change in the conduct of the adult population, we can hope for some positive and lasting impact at the level of the schools as efforts are made to engage the children and to help them grow into a better people. We all recognise it’s going to be tough, but as calypsonian Leroy Calliste (Black Stalin) once sang, “We can make it if we try.”