It is on Holy Thursday that Christians believe Jesus Christ washed the feet of his disciples as an act of service. This act was in keeping with Christ's message of humility and service to the least in society.
As Christians the world over celebrate Holy week in preparation for the resurrection on Easter Sunday, the world is facing a crisis the likes of which has not been seen in a generation.
Trinidad and Tobago has not been spared and over 100 of our citizens have been confirmed as having contracted COVID-19 and eight have passed as a result of complications related to the virus.
The Government has had to take sweeping measures as it tries to protect lives, including closing places where people congregate, from churches to bars to restaurants, to movie theatres and what are deemed non-essential businesses. It has also curtailed the hours of operations of many businesses.
These measures have had the effect of slowing down the economy and causing stress to business owners, workers, sole traders, the self-employed and those least able to help themselves.
To mitigate some of the deleterious effects, the Dr Keith Rowley administration has provided social support to those who have lost their jobs or suffered loss of income as a result of Government's actions.
These have been widely welcomed by this media house and citizens. However, one group left out in the cold are the Venezuelan migrants who are here and working legally in T&T.
One would remember that the Government took a decision to register all Venezuelan migrants within our borders and allow them to work and live here for a year, with the possibility of an extension. This was the right thing to do and most citizens will admit that they have been prepared to work hard and to a large measure, obey the laws of T&T. It is this group that performs so many of the jobs at the lower level that T&T citizens often avoid and they are now adversely affected by what has happened.
We are not speaking here of illegal immigrants or those who are undocumented, but only those registered to work and are here legally. They too have social and economic obligations they are now unable to fulfil. Remember, it only takes one person acting recklessly to put us all at risk during a period when we are all trying to stay safe.
Surely, this is a difficult political decision because the loaves and fish are limited, while the mouths to feed are aplenty. But can we as a society feel comfortable and truly say we are all in this together, if we are prepared to accept what little is being offered while our neighbour remains hungry? Is this the kind of neighbour or service that Jesus thought us?
Yes, it's a difficult political decision to make for the Government, but sometimes what is right must trump what is politically expedient and there is always reciprocity in generosity.