SER­VICE ABOVE SELF

Jamaica Gleaner - - FAMILY & RELIGION - Orantes Moore Gleaner Writer fam­ilyan­dreli­gion@glean­erjm.com

Af­ter read­ing the Bi­ble, I de­cided that Chris­tian­ity was the right way for me. I think Chris­tian­ity re­or­gan­ises your life and gives you a bet­ter ap­pre­ci­a­tion of hu­man­ity.

CASTLE­TON, St Mary: AC­CORD­ING TO Matthew 6:24, it is im­pos­si­ble for a man to serve two masters, but the of­fi­cer in charge of Castle­ton Po­lice Sta­tion in St Mary, Sergeant Christo­pher Ward, ap­pears to be man­ag­ing the task quite well.

As the First El­der, Sab­bath school teacher, per­son­nel min­istry di­rec­tor, and life di­rec­tor of the Post Road Seventh-Day Ad­ven­tist Church in Wood­side, near High­gate, St Mary, Ward has de­vel­oped a for­mula to suc­cess­fully bal­ance his polic­ing and ec­cle­si­as­tic du­ties.

Speak­ing to Fam­ily and Re­li­gion ear­lier this week, Ward, who be­came a po­lice of­fi­cer 10 years af­ter de­vot­ing his life to Christ in 1996, said: “Af­ter read­ing the Bi­ble, I de­cided that Chris­tian­ity was the right way for me. I think Chris­tian­ity re­or­gan­ises your life and gives you a bet­ter ap­pre­ci­a­tion of hu­man­ity.

“As a Chris­tian, some­times it is chal­leng­ing to know what it is like to po­lice this na­tion be­cause you are con­fronted with all dif­fer­ent lev­els of provo­ca­tion. Some­times, the is­sues you deal with make the old per­son re­ally want to come out.

“But what keeps me re­strained most of the time is the un­der­stand­ing that I am rep­re­sent­ing not only the Ja­maica Con­stab­u­lary Force, but I also have a man­date from the Lord to be true to God and be civil to hu­man­ity.”

Ward, who, last year, came sec­ond in Lasco’s 15th an­nual ‘Cop of the Year’ com­pe­ti­tion, was grown and schooled in St Mary, and, there­fore, has a very good un­der­stand­ing of the many is­sues af­fect­ing the parish.

He be­lieves one of the big­gest prob­lems St Mar­i­ans face is caused by the pro­lif­er­a­tion of dif­fer­ent re­li­gious or­gan­i­sa­tions in the parish, which has led to schisms and dis­cord within the com­mu­ni­ties he serves through­out the cen­tral and western re­gions of the parish.

DENOMINATIONAL IS­SUES

“I think the big­gest re­li­gious prob­lems we have are denominational is­sues,” the af­fa­ble po­lice of­fi­cer said. There are so many churches in St Mary, and ev­ery­body has a claim on their own church as to what is right ver­sus what is wrong.

“I don’t know if dis­unity is too strong a ter­mi­nol­ogy, but as Chris­tians, in spite of our denominational dif­fer­ences, there re­ally should be a bet­ter con­nec­tion and greater co­op­er­a­tion in­stead of di­vi­sions. The one­ness that should ex­ist among the Chris­tian body is just not there.

“There re­ally needs to be more unity. I just be­lieve that we should come to­gether and re­alise that God has called us in spite of who we are, the di­vi­sions, and our denominational prac­tices and be­liefs. There is one cause, which is Je­sus Christ, and if we can try and come to and ac­cept that one re­al­i­sa­tion, some of the is­sues we are fac­ing should be min­imised.”

PHOTO BY ORANTES MOORE

Of­fi­cer in charge of Castle­ton Po­lice Sta­tion in St Mary, Sergeant Christo­pher Ward.

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