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Pastors urged to step up

Pastors urged to step up

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A veteran preacher has accused pastors of being out of touch with today’s world.

Delivering the valedictory address at the graduation ceremony of the Institute of Theological Education (ITE) on Sunday, October 5, Rev George Frederick declared that the time when preachers could just bellow from the top of their voices: “Jesus saves” is gone and they must face it.{{more}}

Frederick, who earned his Master’s Degree in Theology from the institution, said that career, social and educational pursuits are among the things competing for the time and energy of today’s listeners, and preachers must adjust.

“It is almost as though the preacher seems like a misfit trying to gain the attention of a people whose interest is otherwise occupied,” said Frederick, who pastors the 300-member Hill Top Tabernacle and is the longtime co-host of the Pentecostal Assemblies of The West Indies’ (PAWI) religious discussion programme “Encounter”.

Frederick, who once served as District Superintendent of PAWI St Vincent, noted that 20th century ways of operating have outlived their usefulness and cannot work today.

“It pains to the heart when we watch many who still feel that if they shout a little harder, or bang the pulpit a little harder, hoping we might attract, just get past the shortened attention span of our hearers,” Rev Frederick said.

While the message of the church remains, Rev Frederick believes that the methods must change, and preachers must develop themselves.

“The luxury and joy when a preacher could pontificate on a rostrum having barely scraped through a primary school education has vanished,” he said bluntly.

According to Frederick, the heritage of the Church is a good one, and he urged believers to live with this in mind.

“It is the Church that caused the world to think,” he said.

He noted the Church’s contribution to education, medicine, literature and science.

Rev Frederick told the packed audience that Christians cannot just be the thermometer of the world, only reflecting the condition of the world, but rather likening the church unto a thermostat which regulates the temperature.(KJ)