Catholic faithful at last weekend’s Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR) 22nd Caribbean Conference were told they may hinder God’s blessing from descending upon them by the things they engaged in.
Holding on to the red lavender, asafetida, Katanga water, the sprinkling of things profane and things from our ancestors are not going to save us, overseas speaker Trinidad-born Fr Anthony Abraham said. Unless these things were renounced, they become “stumbling blocks” and may become an opening of the door for the enemy to rush in.
The January 3–5 conference had as its theme Let us start! Let us rebuild (Neh 2:18c).
In his talk last Sunday titled ‘Miracles and signs will accompany those who believe’, Fr Abraham gave countless stories of people, who, in desperation, visited various persons who deceived them into believing they can fix their lives.
He maintained that in our desperation, faithful cannot shake hands with the devil and let go his hand. “There is a price you will have to pay and so we need to understand that the things of the dark side we have to stay away from… So, you cannot say that you trust God, but you have a ‘simmy dimmy’ in your purse,” he stated.
Fr Abraham, a priest ministering in the Diocese of St Thomas in the US Virgin Islands, revealed that he knows all about “those things” because he lived in Arima close to an obeah woman.
“The things that always amazed me about that lady is that she always fixing people’s lives, but she couldn’t fix her own life and she couldn’t fix the lives of her children. So, you realise there’s a spirit of deception that is upon the land.”
He brought many to laughter when he quipped, “An’ when yuh husband misbehavin’ put his name in a cucumber and put it in a freezer so he will cool down…” quickly adding, “Ah don’t want to see nobody taking notes, doh write that down!”
Fr Abraham emphasised that practices like horseshoes over the front door or walking backwards upon entering the home late at night were “foolishness”.
“You could turn around; you could make a cartwheel. If your life is not holy the enemy is going to follow you. What they don’t tell us is holiness of life is going to chase the devil away.”
Fr Abraham asked if some people still give their children a bush bath before exams. “Doh raise yuh hand!” he joked. “Deal with it in the confessional. We need to cut ties. Get rid of it. It’s not of the Lord.”
He asserted that believers need to be discerning in this time as we live in a world where the artificial looks real. He added that the spirit of deception makes something look and sound good, but it is not good.
He urged faithful to ask God to “open your spiritual eyes” so that they can see the things of the Spirit. “So, you can walk into the workplace and realise something is wrong in this office and [say] ‘I’m coming with my holy water’.”
Fr Abraham reminded attendees that they were not there by chance: God brought them.
“You are here for a reason and that reason is so that God can speak to your life. He can speak to your heart so that when you leave here now, you are going to be filled with the power of God’s Holy Spirit. That wherever you walk now…signs and wonders will follow you.”