Priest defends role in DSH protest

Vieux Fort Parish Priest, Kevin Murray, has defended his participation in a protest demonstration outside parliament Tuesday morning.

The demonstration was against the government’s multi-million dollar Desert Star Holdings (DSH) project in the South of the Island.

“I went as a concerned person who lives in the area,” the Vieux Fort Parish Priest told the Times in an interview.

Murray explained that there are many people who are concerned about how the  proposed DSH project would affect their lives and  livelihood.

“I wanted to stand with them,” he stated.

kevin-murray-2

In response to observations that his presence might be construed as a breach of  what some believe should be the separation of church and state, the Parish Priest said : “This is for the people; people who have rights and dignity and I am not sure that their voice is being heard.”

The Clergyman expressed the view that the church has a responsibility to stand up for people who are in need and persons who have rights but may not be heard.

Murray said for him, it is a moral issue.

He asserted that if homes and livelihoods are going to be destroyed, it is a moral issue that needs attention.

dsh-protest

The Catholic Priest also responded to questions about whether his presence at the protest could divide the flock, in the event that some members might actually be in support of the DSH project because of the ‘obvious’  economic benefits they believe it would bring.

He told the Times:

“I think it is questionable whether those economic benefits are obvious first of all. In terms of the ‘flock’ as you put it, the Priest has to be a moral voice for persons. This is not a political issue for me, it is an issue of principle – it is not an issue of party but of preservation of homes and livelihoods and places where people can go; Sandy Beach in particular which is a wonderful place for families to gather. Young people gather there; local people gather there.”

Murray noted that without Sandy Beach there would be few beaches left for the people to gather.

“I think it is a moral issue. People are free to agree or disagree – that’s life,” he declared.

He observed that as he understands it,  there would be an equine free zone that would prohibit people from having livestock within a three mile radius of  what he called “this proposed destruction of land.’

Murray told the Times that the issues involved relate to beach access, persons homes, their livelihood, small business owners, the farming community and the country people who stand to lose a way of life.

Asked whether he will be present at future demonstrations that may be planned, the Catholic Priest who stated he has been here for five years, told the Times that he intends to continue contributing his voice to the issue.

“I think it is that important, that vital. I don’t know what will transpire in the future, but if I am available and can be there I will be there” he stated.

On the question of whether the Catholic Church would look favourably on such a move, Murray pointed out that Pope Francis is  certainly a man who is for persons who are poor and on the fringes and margins.

He noted that the Pope is a man for the environment, having written an Apostolic Exhortation speaking of mankind’s common home.

“So in terms of our supreme leadership we have a fine example there of a person who is always on the side of those who are poor,” the Vieux Fort Parish Priest told the Times.

40 Comments

  1. R
    December 21, 2016 at 4:52 pm

    Of all the “moral” issues out there this is the only one you want to protest? C’mon Priest, stop looking at life in colours!!

    1. Anonymous
      December 21, 2016 at 6:41 pm

      Agree 100%….. “Far the” why not the blatant sins stated in the Holy Scriptures..

    2. Anonymous
      January 1, 2017 at 6:02 pm

      This priest has no input in what happens to vieux fort. Rome sent You to serve the parishioners, not to get involve in politics. It’s not your place.
      I am from VieuxFort and we want DSH for our people.

  2. concerned
    December 21, 2016 at 4:56 pm

    Chupz tan go win souls for the Lord

  3. Eagles Eye
    December 21, 2016 at 5:03 pm

    Have you protested about immoral acts within the church itself? You stand to be judges by your God whether your actions are political or not.

  4. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 5:03 pm

    Yes you Mr boolbuck so you. Are politicking where were you when all those young boys are been bool by your brotherhood boola so-called preast ????? Where were you’re voice when all the allocations are level at your fagget buddy’s coming vfort and look for you have some questions for you to answer

  5. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 5:14 pm

    Were you promised something fat in the Sunday Collection for your participation in the protest?

  6. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 5:21 pm

    So many crimes have have been committed no churches ever protest against Crime but this priest is so political he’s going to protest ..what a shame . that was a paid protest.no doubt about that one. When someone don’t like you they will go all length to destroy what ever you trying to do .I’d like to see all Of them protest when there’s no jobs .the tourist all gone .cause they robbing them at gun point knifes snatching grabbing. When saint Lucia go down the drain. I hope I will not see and hear protest March. Or protest April.good luck My people.

  7. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 5:28 pm

    So many crimes have have been committed no churches ever protest against Crime but this priest is so political he’s going to protest ..what a shame . that was a paid protest.no doubt about that one. When someone don’t like you they will go all length to destroy what ever you trying to do .I’d like to see all Of them protest when there’s no jobs .the tourist all gone .cause they robbing them at gun point knifes snatching grabbing. When saint Lucia go down the drain. I hope I will not see and hear protest March. Or protest April.good luck My people.

  8. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 5:38 pm

    forget the priest and study the problem. Y give up sandy beach don’t let anyone take over that little fun in the sun we have left.

    1. Look it take it
      December 21, 2016 at 5:48 pm

      I totally agree with you Ananymous. Why giving up the little fun in the sun we have left. Ppl from all the way in north comes to sandy beach to hv some fun in the fun with friends and families. What is going on. I understood that jobs will be created, at the same time they are taking away the fun, ppl livelihood, na man 😭

  9. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 6:43 pm

    church and state my big toe. only when convenient.

  10. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    Where was this hypocrite’s voice when all these young girls and old women were raped, was he not concerned then too? Where was he during the demonstration in town against abuse and rape? Shame Shame Shame! Hypocrite!

    1. Anonymous
      December 22, 2016 at 3:14 pm

      You cannot protest a rape or abuse. It has already happened, and putting your voice out there will not stop it. This is a political issue. Political protests are the way people try to get the government to listen to them to change their stance on something.

  11. viewer
    December 21, 2016 at 7:38 pm

    At list he is standing up for what he believes in,instead of berating the man,why not join him;in helping save our land and beaches from these investors who only care about their pockets…y’all are not affected by it,so y’all commenting all (Words deleted). It had to take a man from another country to fight for our rights(smh,shame)

  12. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 8:00 pm

    can’t believe those comments..look at the issue at hand

  13. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 8:06 pm

    Payee ah pa pou van ti mal. $1.00 an acre lease for 99 years. No taxes will be collected. St Lucian passports sold. Money placed in an offshore account in the developers name. I cannot defend that.

  14. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 8:07 pm

    Payee ah pa pou van ti mal. $1.00 an acre lease for 99 years. No taxes will be collected. St Lucian passports sold. Money placed in an offshore account in the developers name. I cannot defend that.

  15. I Know Why They Mad
    December 21, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    Stop being fooled by politicians who insult your intelligence. Affixing a price of $1 for land or property is a very common business practice which Hilaire and Pip are very well aware of. Google “peppercorn rate” and educate yourself. I won’t tell you the meaning, decide for yourself. These fellas are too damn malicious. But I understand because if this project and others go through they know there will be no chance in hell of getting back in office at the next elections. What is the real reason they took 18 months without an agreement when they were in office? Too much grease hands don’t work in the interest of the country. Wasn’t it Invader who sang “For A Cut?” We living in a for-cut society, ask Juffali.

  16. princess
    December 21, 2016 at 8:47 pm

    Proud of that priest. Saying it as it is.

  17. princess
    December 21, 2016 at 8:57 pm

    Peppercorn rate and 100 % tax concessions for a foreigner with a glossy scheme but no local investor would ever get that. DSH is a scam and you walk into the trap with your eyes wide open. Read the deal they sign and educate yourself. No-bo-dy in their right mind would sign that. Nobody.

    1. Anonymous
      December 21, 2016 at 11:11 pm

      Who would be the local investor with the expertise or the plan or the money? You make it seem as if investors just get to choose or impose themselves on whatever they want. Why didn’t these imaginary investors you talk about come up with the idea themselves? Why didn’t they develop Vieux Fort all these years it has been wallowing in a mangrove swamp under Kenny? By the way, who are these investors you want to suggest, any names?

    2. Anonymous
      December 21, 2016 at 11:15 pm

      And if peppercorn rates and 100% tax exempt is given so freely as you suggest, why don’t you get those same concessions so you can invest or develop St. Lucia? WHy didn’t Kenny give it to locals when he was in office and DSH had approached his administration? So you see, it’s not just wishful thinking about imaginary local investors but rather those who have a track record and reputation of having already accomplished similar developments. If only it were as simple as you suggest St. Lucia would have been a paradise with local investors.

      1. bingo
        December 22, 2016 at 9:36 pm

        Rubbish. You are clearly not a vieux fortian or you would know how many of us have fought over the years with NDC/Invest Saint Lucia for just the smallest piece of land to start or grow a business. Dozens of young enterpreneurs from the south have been denied access to the lands around vieux fort by invest saint Lucia over yhe years, or quoted prohibitive high rents / leases. The people of vieux fort are as dispossessed of land now as since the days of sugar and slavery. Not one government has had the guts or vision to amend that . It is a grave injustice and the DSH deal only adds insult to that pain. It is NOT about this party or that party. If anything, its about government’s blindness / arrogance to the plight and needs of the people in the south. Especially in vieux fort town. Politicians generally have failed us but we are not so stupid that we cannot recognize a horse crap deal when we see one!

  18. concern
    December 21, 2016 at 9:28 pm

    Shame on this this, he is distroying our catholic church in St Lucia now. Bishop Rivas needs to decipline mate. Did the priest ever met with the nee government to discuss this issue before he went to join the protest? Bishop Rivas I am not accepting this. This priest is out of place to join a political protest. he must go

  19. concern
    December 21, 2016 at 9:38 pm

    This priest is really out of place. There are so many problems to take care in the catholic church. Did that priest ever think of setting to have a meeting with the government to view his concern? Who the hell is he, that priest needs to get out of our affairs . All the child molestations you all priests are doing to our young girls and boys have you ever protest about that. You hypocrite. Go and slim down your self. Since when priests in St Lucia are taking part in political protest. This priest has bring down the morals of priests. This is why people have no respect for priests anymore. And he so have no shame he into mike to.

  20. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 11:22 pm

    I support you 100% Father!

  21. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 11:33 pm

    Oh boy the labours are on toes .the gooroos are protesting against some thing they don’t really understand to hear them quarrel. Their pressure ready to blow .they hungry but they don’t want the food. You all morons.

  22. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 11:39 pm

    All morons that are protesting never went to Sandy Beach but that is where they taking Sand baths you all morons.

  23. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 11:42 pm

    That priest is a real moron he looking like one too. Hi Hi

  24. Anonymous
    December 22, 2016 at 3:35 am

    During the days of slavery the catholic church was responsible for keeping the slaves stupid and ignorant and encouraging them to accept their plight as slaves and remaining poor and destitute and when they die their reward will be in heaven while they stole our lands for the vatian. If we are getting investors who are willing to assist our people in developing ourselves why the hell the priest is encouraging the people to protest at the same time taking the collection from the same poor ex slaves. Vieux fortians don’t be fooled by those who want to see you in continuous poverty as they benifit by you being forever poor. We want our heaven to be on earth by working to help ourselves and our children. Welcome to our investors. God has opened our eyes and we no longer are stupid and ignorant as they wanted us to be. God help those who help themselves. He promise to give us everything if we listen to him not the devil who disguisé himselve as a priest. God through our prime minister will provide for us by giving him wisdom knowledge and understanding to make all decisions in the interest of our people and the country. To hell with Kenny and his acolites.

  25. Anonymous
    December 22, 2016 at 8:26 am

    For him it is a moral issue?? is this priest serious. Morality of the way the young women dress, morality of what ensues in the “ghettos” where they smoke their heads off and sex young girls freely, morality causing all those rapes and stealing. Thats the morality I want you to stand to fix Priest.
    There isnt a morality issue with a deal between government and investor. There may be a fairness issue, or a clarity issue, but you say Moral ee. Moral mean having to do with right and wrong, which are really guided by the 10 commandments really.

    Furthermore. WHAT ABOUT THE MORALITY OF PRIESTS GETTING ALL THOSE CONCESSIONS ON THEIR VEHICLES AND PROPERTY ETC… WE NEED TO PROTEST THAT, CAUSE I HAD TO PAY UP TO CLEAR MY VEHICLE WHILE YOU HAD NOTHING TO PAY

    REMOVE YOUR COLORED GLASSES AND TRY TO MAKE SENSE.

  26. Anonymous
    December 22, 2016 at 8:28 am

    the priest says they will take away the court from the ghetto ee. Priest why arent you trying to make sure that these ppl uplift themselves OUT FROM the ghetto. You want to KEEP them in the GHETTO
    thats disgraceful and thats whats a MORAL ISSUE

  27. Anonymous
    December 22, 2016 at 10:24 am

    this priest is not a man of god because he would know that as a man of the cloth its wrong to do what he is doing and i will be going to your parish this is so disgusting give the goverment a chance jezze

  28. No name
    December 22, 2016 at 11:47 am

    Why is it that some of u lucians are so quick to judge. Why not focus on the problem and not the priest. He is entitled to his personal opinion. Go have a sit and focus on yourself before judging people cause at the end of the day the judgement is done by God.

  29. chichi
    December 22, 2016 at 5:30 pm

    You guys need to stop calling this con man from China an investor. An investor puts his money down and up front. The monies being used in this Ponzi scheme comes from the sale of St. Lucian passports. Get that straight he is not an investor but a con man.

  30. bingo
    December 22, 2016 at 9:49 pm

    The priest is right. All of y’all just trying to piss in people’s eye to divert attention from the true issue: the deal the PM signed with DSH is a TERRIBLE business deal that threatens the future of the people of vieux fort and st Lucia. Nobody is against investment I development. The people of vieux fort have asked for a marina since John Compton was there. But this DSH contract is a BAD DEAL. And the priest is not the only one seeing it and saying it. Vieux fort will rise. Remember the banana war in the valley. Mark my words!

  31. Anonymous
    December 28, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    I need CHASTANET set fire to the north,south east and west of St.Lucia burning everybody I don’t care (Words deleted) they brought it on themselves.

  32. HHITLER
    December 28, 2016 at 11:10 pm

    CHASTANET SHOULD SELL EVERYTHING AND GO INTO EXILE ST LUCIAN ARE TOO STUPID.

  33. anonymous
    April 15, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    Truly a man of God for defending the poor and the environment.

    Who among us is brave enough to do what he did in defense of those who have less in life? Who among us can take a principled stand on preserving the natural beauty of Vieux Fort (which includes Sandy Beach) to ensure that future generations will get to enjoy it in all its purity.

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