The Catholic Controversy
On the heels of a general election Prime Minister Skerrit donates $500,000 to the Cathedral project, which at any other time would be considered a fine gesture, but in typical Skerrit style it had to be now because he wants something in return. Even Charlimo would figure out that what Mr. Skerrit wants is the Catholic vote. The Bishop nevertheless accepted.
If the possibility existed that the Bishop may have turned down the offer, Skerrit would never offer help at this time because a rejection would make him look bad at a time when he needs to look good. He must have known beforehand that the Bishop would accept. The Bishop is "our boy" said Crazy T. How could he have known? Did he meet the Bishop and discuss the matter before making it public?
Here's what I believe happened. Roosevelt Skerrit is desperate for Catholic votes. He will do anything to win this election because if he loses his goose is cooked.
''I have a proposition, '' he says to the Bishop. ''I am willing to donate $500,000 towards the Cathedral project, but you must accept, so I will look good in the eyes of the Catholic voters. The Bishop agrees; he receives the money and Skerrit feels confident about the Catholic vote. Both parties are happy.
Whether the meeting actually took place is beside the point. The Prime Minister's integrity has never been his strongest trait but the Bishop on the other hand is another story. For some reason, the Bishop allowed himself to be used by the PM. All the Bishop had to say was he is very sorry but it is not appropriate to accept the donation at this time as some people may view it, and understandably so ,as a move to influence the Catholic vote and his mission is not to influence people which way to vote.
Not only does the Bishop accept, he tells the PM that this gesture will not go unrewarded. Big mistake!
What is the reward Mr Bishop and who is it coming from? It will not come from the heavenly Father because it was not given in good faith. It was given expecting something purely materialistic in return. The reward is the Catholic vote.
Religious leaders ought to have no political mission. Our Police Service, the courts, the IPO, the Electoral Office, the Electoral Commission, and several other independent institutions including the banks are already politically tainted and now religion. Pope Francis, I am sure, is more than a little annoyed. The alleged agreement between the PM and the Bishop, in my view, is a clear cut indication of corruption. We need no longer wonder why the churches are so silent on the subject.
Our leaders should be men and women of integrity and character to be emulated by the generations to follow. But sadly our leaders fall short of all the good qualities.