President Anthony Carmona is calling for mercy and forgiveness to pervade in this Easter season.
The following is the President's Easter message:
"Easter is a time of genuine inclusivity, spiritual rebirth and regeneration. The Resurrection of Jesus Christ bears the underlying motif of rebirth, renewal and eternal hope.
"Love, we must all share with each other in the spirit of our humanity whether you are agnostic, atheist, a non-believer, a doubting Thomas or a non-Christian.
"As Christians, we kneel everyday on that altar of humanity, praying for everyone, their salvation and their rebirth.
"We all have a purpose and a reason and we must believe in something and that something must have the quality of permanence, inspiration and positive social transformation. It is with this in mind and this objective, that our spiritual love for all our brothers and sisters of this Republic in this epiphany of Easter, knows no bounds and has no time limits.
"We sometimes throw stones at those who invoke the power of God and the power of prayer but those of us who truly believe in God and even in eternal life must never waiver in that belief. We must all persevere and the beneficence from rebirth that comes with this Easter time, must make us all strong.
"This is not to say that as a society, we do not feel down and out and even despondent when we confront in our society, man’s inhumanity to man. There continues to be a growing crisis in defining and acting out true manhood against the backdrop of the killings and mayhem that occur from time to time. Is that pattern of manhood defining what Trinidad and Tobago is?
"We must not despair"
"We must not despair and the message of Easter tells us this. All broken things can be made whole. We must believe and have an unabiding faith that all bad men are salvageable and this is made possible not only through social transformative initiatives but also through the invocation and power of prayer.
"The Holy Father, Pope Francis has deemed this year, the ecclesiastical year of mercy and forgiveness. Let us therefore at this Easter time, recreate within our lives the love and application of mercy and reject outright that unholy sanction we often act out and it is called revenge.
"Let us show compassion and kindness to others at this Easter time and throughout the year. We must therefore have and nurture a disciple’s tongue to respond to the negatives that often rule and dictate our thoughts and daily lives. We must eradicate in ourselves, the primitive emotions we resort to and our social indifference to loss of life and therefore loss of love.
"The intelligent and formally educated are failing us. They must be more responsible and caring and must all wake up to the realization that as intelligent and formally educated men and women, we must stop fooling the ignorant and the not so well informed.
"The irrevocable message of Jesus Christ’s leadership was one of enlightenment. At this Easter time and the remainder of the year, our national dialogue must not be confrontational in attempting to solve our Nation’s problems but rather it must be open, frank, inclusive and most of all, honest and even spiritual.
We must listen to the ideas and opinions of all, without exception, because no one exclusively has the solution to problems.
"Leadership and humility together"
"In the agony, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we found inspiring humility, spoken of and lived. Leadership and humility therefore must always walk hand in hand because genuine leadership is about relentless and selfless service.
"We further need a reconciliation among us all grounded in mercy and forgiveness. Mercy and forgiveness are not exclusive to men and women of the cloth, and if true reconciliation takes place in our hearts, the desired impact of that reconciliation will be judged and assessed by our deeds and actions and not our words. Remember people of this wonderful Republic, the agony, anguish and pain of Jesus Christ on the Cross was the precursor to our ultimate salvation.
"I further send out a very special greeting to our brothers and sisters in Tobago where “Easter Tuesday” is celebrated with great food, harmony, joy and genuine love.
"Do enjoy the warm family gatherings and the excitement that comes with “Easter Tuesday” during the Goat and Crab races, at Buccoo. It is those simple things that give meaning to what life is really about, family love, family care and community togetherness.
"On behalf of my wife Reema, son Christian and daughter Anura, I wish the Christian community and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago a happy, blessed and Holy Easter."
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