Rev Joy Abdul-Mohan

While many have exhaled having survived 2020, Moderator of the Presbyterian Church Rev Joy Abdul-Mohan says citizens have to be courageous as they face new challenges this year. Reflecting on last year’s challenges with COVID-19, heinous crimes, domestic violence, road carnage, the migrant crisis and other social, economic and political Issues, she said, “It is my hope that this trend will not continue in the New Year, 2021, even though we must brace for the new experiences and challenges it may bring.”

With the discovery of a vaccine, she was hopeful that it would mitigate the effects of the virus. Already, the coronavirus has claimed 1.83 million lives worldwide and infected about 84 million people.

In her New Year’s message, Abdul-Mohan said, “Some politicians and economists have predicted ‘structural adjustments’ in the New Year that may lead to a cut in, or loss of income, retrenchment, unemployment, loss of homes and other hardships. Any of these will impact negatively on home and family life.

“2021 will be a testing time for both the church and the nation. It will demand a re-ordering of priorities at every level of our society as we keep in mind those on the margins. It will also demand meaningful dialogue and consultation with labour, economic stakeholders, civil society, and the Government to grasp the changes in a spirit of understanding and compassion.”

The moderator said the church has an even greater responsibility to minister to God’s people in the present context and to encourage each other ‘to live’.

“We all need courage by which to live. The miracle of courageous living always commands our respect and admiration. Just to think about people with the courage to live, thrills our imagination, stirs our hearts and rouse a passion of worth and high resolve. In our best moments, we know that life calls us not to be comfortable but to be courageous.”

The good news, she said, is that they are not alone. “Despite, the fact that we, the members of the Presbyterian Church and citizens of T&T are faced with many difficulties, shattered dreams and frustrated hopes, we can still rejoice in the fact that we are alive and we serve a Living God–a God who is still working for the best.”