Deuteronomy 30:19 echoed the theme of the Carapichaima Parish’s Ninth Lenten Crusade. From Monday, February19 to Friday 23 nightly the parish community together with surrounding communities and passersby were exposed to an awesome week of talks related to the theme: Choose Life.
Each night began with recitation of the Holy Rosary followed by praise and worship led by the parish’s music ministry. On Monday, the crusade kicked off with Fr Cornelius Phillip FMI with a dynamic delivery which set the tone for the other nights. He presented the options of choosing life over death, showing others the way to live positively and cautioned all not to live as we want since by default we can choose death.
On Tuesday night Fr Jason Boatswain continued to bring all to the decision to choose life that would result in a blessing to our lives. He cautioned all that we must be careful in the things we choose for ourselves and children, and emphasised obligation to Holy Mass as we choose life. He also highlighted that we often use social media and our tongue to condemn others rather than bring life to others. He ended his night with a powerful prayer calling the Spirit upon all present.
Deacon Derek Walcott wooed the crowd on Wednesday night with his surge of energy. He started with the song: ‘Year for Love’ by Voice. He had the crowd not only singing it, but pointed out how “fire can bun them” if we choose death over life. He encouraged all present to think before they act, keeping Jesus in all decisions so that the choice is always life in, and with Jesus.
On Thursday, Lesley Taylor-Gouveia, Fr Ian Taylor’s sister, continued to present the challenge of choosing life instead of death. She shared on the importance of the choices we make in relation to the shows we look at and allow our children to see, the websites we visit, online videos they look at, the music we listen to, even the impact of Carnival today and its immorality. Like Fr Boatswain, she reminded all of their obligation to Holy Mass as a decision to choose life.
Fr Matthew Ragbir closed off the crusade on Friday night with Holy Mass. In his homily he reminded us of our lives belonging to Christ hence our actions must reflect Christ. When Christ commanded us to pick up our cross and follow Him, he expects us to do this daily, regardless of our circumstances. The crusade ended with the offering of prayer requests and a spirit of great thanksgiving.
Fr Gerard Bernier and the parish of Our Lady of Mt Carmel thank all those who made our crusade a success: our dynamic speakers, the choir, prayer group, hospitality team and each and every one who attended. May God bless you all as you choose life in Christ. – Rosemarie Siewnarine