Temporary Independent Senator and Seventh Day Adventist pastor Clive Dottin yesterday expressed deep concern about the ruling that sex between consenting male adults was no longer illegal, saying it goes against God’s plan.
While Dottin expressed uneasiness and worry, the T&T Guardian learnt that several religious leaders were engaged in a closed-door marathon meeting to discuss the decision handed down.
Among the religious heads who attended the meeting were Council of Evangelical Churches president Rev Desmond Austin and Faith-Based Ministries president Pastor Winston Mansingh.
Weighing in on the issue, Dottin said such a decision will open the floodgates for immorality and wrongdoing, as it would go against God’s will.
“It’s a Godless package. I totally disagree with it. I am sure there will be a response from different religious groups, including mine, as we intend to meet shortly.”
Dottin said his church, which has a special task force, will examine the ruling while two inter-religious groups will give their responses next week.
“We would definitely be looking at different strategies. I have always been concerned that our major response should be a more biblical model for the family….which means that a marriage should always be between a male and female. Going against this would have serious consequences.”
He called on right-thinking people to stand up for what is right, noting such a ruling can destroy the fabric of our society.
But Coalition Advocating for Inclusion of Sexual Orientation (CAISO) executive director Colin Robinson viewed the ruling as a clarification of April’s judgment.
Speaking from New York, Robinson said the LGBTQI community was looking forward to the case moving to the Court of Appeal.
Robinson said they were now “one step closer” for equality for lesbians and gays. He also sent a message to religious leaders that there was room for all to “share the nation.”
Bishop Keith Ramdass, former chairman of T&T Cause, the religious group that staged two protests against the LGBTI community in April, said he disapproved of the decision, adding what was on the law books should stand.
“Buggery is still, whether consenting or not, is still a crime, sin and contrary to our beliefs. The people should have the final say on something like this,” said Ramdass, of Redemption Worship Centre.
He suggested that Government comes up with a referendum so the population can decide if buggery should be illegal or legal and not leave it up to the court.
“Let us have a consensus on the population. This is one avenue we can look at.”
Ramdass said it was time for all churches to raise their voices against buggery.
“Once we keep going in that direction, more and more they (LGBTI community) will go to the courts for other things that could affect the moral fabric of our society,” Ramdass said.
He promised to press on with his fight through the Council of Evangelical Churches.
“It would come down to where it would affect our education in schools because the same sex situation is going to change family values and what we practiced over the years we would see a small minority group trying to impose their immoral values on an entire society.”