St Kitts and Nevis (WINN): One church building problem though on its way to resolution, could spark a domino effect, warns those involved in that project.
New Birth Gospel Tabernacle church leader Cyprian Williams is hailing a land swap proposal from the government that will allow his church building to be constructed on a permanent site.
The church is having to relocate because people in the Cabbage Tree Development area insisted that it is a residential area, and New Birth should be moved to a more appropriate location.
That position was supported by the government, which in an effort to resolve the dispute is offering an alternative site.
Pastor Williams says there are other church buildings in other residential areas that could pose additional problems for the authorities.
“Right now a lot of my pastor colleagues are voicing their concerns about their own churches because if you have set something for one and you are saying that a church cannot be built in a residential area, then what will happen to all the lands that have been given out to churches that are in residential areas? So right now I know that there will be some concern and letters that will be written to the government and also churches and leaders will be visiting the Building, Control and Planning Board because they will have to answer that. You can’t wait until people have done all this stuff, for example suppose we had already purchased our steel, we were just in the process of doing it, so what would have happened if we had already purchased it? Some of the pastors have visited, called, emailed, prayed and it has been tremendous and they have said to me that they are very much concerned about this issue because it means that homeowners around their churches can sign a petition and have them closed down or the same situation happens where they can’t build. So I think the government has to look into that, this is not in any way speaking against the government, I’m giving them advice that they need to look into protecting the churches.”
New Birth Gospel Tabernacle is in the process of constructing a permanent church building for its 500 strong congregation.