By Staff Writer
With a theme of ‘Make the most of this time: Develop the right mindset’, the 5th Annual Parliamentary Prayer Breakfast last Wednesday morning served to hopefully draw a line under the tensions which characterised the recent general election and government formation.
Hosted by new Hon. Minister for Health and Wellness, Sabrina Turner, the Prayer Breakfast featured scripture readings and calls for the community to come together following what Hon. Speaker McKeeva Bush himself described as “a bitter election campaign” during his presentation.
“It's time to lay down the sword and pick up the plowshare. And so, I feel we set the example early. The election is past, the people's choices have been made, our democracy is secured.”
Continuing in that vein, he said: “If our house be so divided, our country will not rest...God has been merciful to us. We must not and cannot squander this new opportunity with pettiness.”
HE Governor Martyn Roper also reflected on the election campaign and again urged the community to put it behind and move forward.
“We had our own challenges recently in the election where social media fed a growing assertiveness and polarisation in our society which we've seen across the world and is unhealthy for our democracy. I join the call of the speaker that we put that behind us, I urge everyone, continue to treat everyone else in our community, dignity, courtesy, respect at all times, even when differences are deeply held.”
Looking back at the events of the past month, Hon. Minister for Tourism and Transport Kennth Bryan, who offered this perspective.
“In respect to formulating our government, there were some protests and some strong words in social media. And it may seem divisive but it depends on the eyes that you see them through,” Mr Bryan opined.
“For me, I saw it as finally Caymanians were starting to find their voice again.”
In a later remarks, Hon. Speaker McKeeva Mr Bush spoke of his confidence in the new government and Cabinet to navigate Cayman through the many challenges which he said the country faces, especially the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have a new, very young and dynamic cabinet,” he said. “We've come a long way but we have many, many challenges, let's not forget that. The reality is there, this country faces tremendous challenges. Look around the world. And you will know what I'm saying.”
Acknowledging that “we want to open up because we need the money,” Mr Bush however urged stressed the importance of residents getting vaccinated in order for that to be realised.
It was a message also delivered by Hon. Minister for Tourism and Transport Kenneth Bryan.
“It's very important that we find the best strategies to keep you safe. And based on the scientific information, vaccines are the only way that we know. So I ask of you, if you have not been vaccinated already, please consider it as God fearing people. I ask you to pray about it and I encourage you to think about being vaccinated to keep us all safe.”
HE Governor Martyn Roper also highlighted the importance of the vaccination campaign in an address that touched on several issues.
“Some people still have genuine concerns about vaccines and we should respect (that) but I would just urge them to speak to health professionals and seek objective advice. Speak to family and friends who have taken it. I really do believe taking the vaccine is the Cayman kind of thing to do for everybody in our community, and I hope everyone here will encourage others to take it,” he said.
The Prayer Breakfast also featured scripture readings By Hon. Premier Wayne Panton and Hon. Leader of the Opposition Roy McTaggart alongside sermons by the local clergy.