September 27, 2020

Bob’s songs should be in hymn books

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The songs of music icon Bob Marley may soon be heard within the walls of the House of God.

The Bishop of Kingston, the Right Reverend Robert Thompson, says Marley’s music should be in hymn books so the church can appeal to a wider audience.

During a visit to Cayman, Bishop Thompson said it’s high time the Church advanced their efforts to understand young people and the needs of society.

Music from the legendary Jamaican Reggae icons Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, will be sung alongside other traditional Christian songs in St. George’s Anglican Church.

In an unprecedented and courageous move towards expanding the church’s Christian outreach, the Bishop  of  Kingston, the Right Reverend Dr. Robert McLean Thompson, has embraced the inclusion of Marley’s music in the Church hymnbook.

But the 63-year-old said he still struggles to relate with the youth of today – and says he has problem with young men showing their underpants!

The Bishop, who is the father of two boys, ages 27 and 28, believes it’s time for the Church to advance their efforts to understand the young people and the needs of society.

The move to induct the music of the late Jamaican Reggae musicians, Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, into the musical repertoire of the Church was explained by the Bishop.

He said: “The Church needs constantly to engage the language of the culture in which it operates in the world.

“The way it worships and speaks to the world cannot be like it was 100 years ago.”

By having his cultural and liberating music played during Christian worship, the Reggae legend will be creating a “Natural Mystic,” which is also the name of one of his songs.

But the Bishop said adapting some of the musical culture of the society could pose a serious problem to the modesty and divinity of the church if it is not properly managed.

He said: “The danger is, if the church adapts too much of the contemporary cultures, it then cannot be distinguished from the rest of the world.”

During his interview with iNews, the Bishop admitted he is no expert at youth psychology, but will not give up on them.

He said: “There are many things about the modern age that I still do not understand, like rap music and certain kinds of fashion.

“When a young man is wearing the waist of his pants in line with his buttocks, I have a problem with that.

“I don’t accept the fact that I must condemn something because I don’t understand it. I still struggle with myself to understand where people are at, or else I will not be able to communicate with them.

“All of our Clergy has to learn psychology, so we are equipped to be able to guide people.”

The St. George’s Anglican (Episcopal) Church, of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands is part of the district, or Diocese, under the jurisdiction of the Jamaican Bishop.

The Bishop is here as part of an annual visiting responsibility of the Jamaican Diocese to oversee the church’s operations here.

The Bishop and his wife are currently here for 10 days.

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