The Bishop and his 'message' from God
Nassau, The Bahamas
WE KNOW times are tough and that today managers have to think "outside the box" to raise revenue, but no one can match the genius of a bishop who Monday night filled his church and collection plate by promising to reveal the antics of "three demons" who threatened our country with destruction.
Of course, it had to be so, didn't God join Bishop Neil Ellis on a lonely walk and whisper the horror in his ear, instructing him to take the news back to save his people from the fires of hell? Like Moses coming down from the mountain with his tablet of ten commandments, Bishop Ellis couldn't wait to get back to the Bahamas to share with Bahamians God's warning. However, unlike Moses, The Tribune's reporter could not find a glow of holy light around the bishop's head.
Of course, The Tribune always wanting to be first with the news, pestered the bishop to reveal the demon's names -- the time he planned to do so in his church was rather late for our deadline. He refused.
Bishop Ellis maintained it would be dangerous to do so. God had told him it had to be done in church will all the congregation present. This would be their only opportunity to hear God's words from the mouth of his messenger. The words were to be spoken only once, in other words no repeat performance, no radio, no TV, no web, and, possibly if he could help it, no Tribune. But The Tribune was so curious and so anxious to let our readers know what demons had been assigned to wreak havoc in their lives, that we extended our deadlines and waited.
Mission accomplished: By 7:30pm the church was not only full; it was overflowing. And as the bishop had anticipated, his "demons" had brought in enough of the gullible to justify the setting up of special monitors in the parking lot so that those who could not find a seat could still watch the circus. The Bishop certainly got the crowds for the once-in-a lifetime show, but the only secret that he kept to himself was how much was left behind in the collection plates. After all men -- even a bishop -- must find ways to outwit hard time.
We soon learned that the three demons were well known to all of us - sexual immorality, financial instability and witchcraft. So what's new? Surely, the bishop knew that these demons entered the human race the day Adam and Eve got the heave-ho from the Garden of Eden. Ever since then mankind has struggled -- and often lost the battle in the garden of Good and Evil.
Would you believe that this is the same bishop who during the May, 2002 election told his congregation from the pulpit that anyone among them who did not support the PLP at the polls should "haul hip."
"Get lost," he shouted from the pulpit, "I don't want to see you any more." According to him then Opposition leader Perry Christie was the anointed one who he was holding "close to his breast." This man of God, anointed to tend the flock regardless of political affiliation, boasted that he received nothing from the PLP, but it was no secret he gave much to them. In other words, they were very much indebted to him. He boasted that they travelled on his plane, he paid all their bills, covered their hotel costs, fed them, but "never took a dime from them" -- no wonder his poor congregation have to keep his coffers filled.
Declaring that he was a humble little bishop who wanted nothing in return, he just could not contain another boast:
"Do you know what could happen in this country if the Bishop who has the largest congregation has the prime minister of the country hooked up to him? Imagine what could happen if the church had a say in the prime minister's office." No wonder he ordered his congregation who would not vote for Mr Christie to "haul hip." The "humble" little bishop, although unelected, had visions of presiding over all of us from the centre of power.
And then there was the Singing Bishop with his miracle water who created quite a stir -- didn't we just hear Bishop Ellis warn about witchcraft?
Well, on a hot day in August 2005 Bishop Lawrence Rolle -- known as the "Singing Bishop" -- packed thousands in to attend his miracle water service. He had hoodwinked another Baptist Bishop into believing in his new beverage. It was this bishop who announced that through the water the singing bishop had raised a man from the dead. At the service several woman testified to miracle healings of their aches and pains.
Of course, The Tribune, always the miserable sceptic, wanted to know more about this modern Lazarus. We pestered the "Singing Bishop" so much that eventually he admitted that the "dead" man never died, nor did his body ever go to the mortuary. It appears that the sight of the hearse "shivered" him into life.
The hoax seemed to lose its savour when The Tribune published a little experiment we had in our newsroom. Gathered around the TV set to watch our Golden Girls run the 4x100 relay race, the news editor decided to test the miracle water. He sprinkled some of it on top of the TV set just as Tamika Clarke, the starter, approached Chandra Sturrup to pass the baton. Suddenly Chandra collapse in a heap and Tamika had to jump over her. The reporters blamed their editor for jinxing the race with the prophet's "cursed" water.
We just hope God has a sense of humour as He looks down on his foolish creatures. If He does He must be having a good belly laugh at some of these false prophets and their gullible followers.
January 18, 2012
- Bishop Neil Ellis of Mount Tabor Full Gospel Baptist Church warned that there are three demons that are holding The Bahamas hostage... and can only be exorcised with prayer... ... The demons are sexual immorality, financial instability and witchcraft -
- Bishop Neil Ellis is right... there are more than three demons destroying The Bahamas... but the main ones are the ones he decided to drag across the coals Monday night -- sexual immorality, financial instability and witchcraft -