Church leaders today issued a rare press release and delved headlong into the growing public discourse of the so-called gay agenda. Signed by Bishop Dorick Wright of the Roman Catholic Diocese, Bishop Philip Wright of the Anglican Diocese and Reverend Eugene Crawford of the Belize Association of Evangelical Churches, the statement formally announced that Christian leaders have applied to join the government in the case of Caleb Orozco and UNIBAM versus the Attorney General of Belize. The release says UNIBAM is heavily influenced by foreign interests who seek to impose a world view that directly contradicts the supremacy of God as reflected in our laws by seeking to abolish the nation’s sodomy laws. The church leaders say that the action challenged our national sovereignty and threatens our very way of life. Their statement says, and we quote: “We declare that God is the author of all creation as our Constitution affirms by recognizing the supremacy of God,” end of quote. The leaders make known in their release, that what they describe as the homosexual agenda insists on the promotion of homosexual acts in the schools and society and undermined the rights of parents as primary educators of their children. Ultimately the release concludes, is that the promotion of sodomy and immoral behaviour, disguised as comprehensive sexual education will lead ultimately to a call for same-sex marriage in Belize. According to the clergy statement, quote: “this lawsuit was filed to establish a new right to engage in homosexual acts in Belize. In every country that has granted a new right to homosexual behaviour, activists have promoted and steadily expanded this right t trump universally recognized rights to religious freedom and expression,” end of quote. The release ends by saying that the Church is joining the Supreme Court case as interested parties representing a broad majority of Christian churches in Belize who do not support these initiatives of changing our laws to accommodate homosexual behaviour. The high powers team of attorneys who will represent the churches s interested parties include Senior Counsels Rodwell Williams and Eamon Courtenay as well as attorneys Michel Chebat, Jackie Marshalleck and Christopher Coye. The case in question is expected to come up for hearing in the Supreme Court in July of this year.
On Tuesday the Council of Churches filed an application in the Supreme Court to join the Attorney General’s Office in a case brought by the United Belize Advocacy Movement (UNIBAM) and its executive president, Caleb Orosco. It’s a case that is attracting local and international attention and high profile lawyers are sitting on both sides of the legal divide. UNIBAM is challenging Section Fifty-Three of the criminal code, which states that carnal intercourse against the order of nature is an indictable matter which carries a prison sentence of up to ten years. Orosco, who is openly gay, is seeking to have the law declared unconstitutional since gays can face prison time for sexual preferences. However, the clergy has come forward with a stinging statement condemning UNIBAM‘s action. According to Canon Leroy Flowers, who represents the Council of Churches, the motion to argue the validity of the law presents a moral argument despite its origin within the Constitution.
Canon Leroy Flowers, Representative, Council of Churches
“Nobody should be shocked or surprised. The church is the moral authority within the context of the nation and therefore it is the church’s view that the very challenge that has been brought against the attorney general is really an attack on the teachings of the church and therefore has made its stand known. This should not be a thing [that’s] new to anyone. We see this as another undermining of the very moral fiber of the society and while there are many members who may not necessarily agree with the church’s position. The church has got to maintain its stance [and] its understanding but more importantly as a society we’ve said the very preamble of our constitution talks about the supremacy of God. You can’t talk about the supremacy of God and then undermine the very thing that seeks to uphold that principle and we feel that a part of that principle has to be between a man and a woman and not a man and a man or two women for that matter or a man and an animal as it were. Now this does not in any way signify the purity of the church. It simply seeks to challenge what we believe to be part of the moral fiber of our nation.”
Later in the news cast, we’ll have the reaction from UNIBAM’s executive president.