Despite the participation of its members in elective politics, the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) church has declared that it is neutral in politics.
“We do not have any allegiance to any political party,” Pastor of the SDA Church, Devron Thomas has asserted.
Thomas said the church is not a civic organization but a divine institution.
He stated that as a consequence, on its pulpits the SDA church does not campaign for any political party.
However he stated that church members have various rights as citizens, including running for political office and the right to vote.
The SDA Pastor observed that because of the divisive nature of politics members of the church who run for public office should try their best to keep their campaign away from the church.
“The church of course distances itself from any political party,” Thomas noted, while stating that church members may.
“In such cases I think whoever the Pastor of that individual is, I think there must be some type of conversation, some type of advice, some type of dialogue as it relates to how that person ought to conduct himself in the public.”
Thomas asserted that members of the SDA church who enter elective politics must maintain their “Christian garb” and ensure that what they say on the political platform is “guarded” and wholesome.
He referred to a church member who may be running on a ruling Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) ticket and another on an opposition United Workers Party (UWP) ticket as being “rather unfortunate.”
However Thomas said such individuals should try to keep their politics away from the church because politics divides people.
A number of Seventh Day Adventists have in the past taken part in elective politics.
Currently the Castries South East candidate for the ruling SLP, Joachim Henry, is a member of the SDA Church as is the incumbent MP for the area, Guy Joseph, whom he is opposing.
Castries South MP, Doctor Robert Lewis, is also a member of the SDA church.