The 2013 to 2014 legal year officially opened this morning with what appeared to be a poorly attended religious service at St. Mary’s Anglican Church in Bridgetown. With a judicial official telling Barbados TODAY he was disappointed that more of his colleagues did not turn out, the overall number of worshippers was estimated at less than 150.
Taking part in the service were Governor General Sir Elliott Belgrave, Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite, Chief Justice Sir Marston Gibson, Director of Public Prosecutions, Charles Leacock, newly-appointed Acting Commissioner of Police, Tyrone Griffith, and presiding officers of the high and lower courts.
Church leaders from three denominations also shared in the proceedings — Rector of St. Mary’s, Dr Von Watson, Roman Catholic Bishop of Bridgetown and Kingstown, Reverend Charles Jason Gordon and Salvation Army Divisional Commander for Barbados and St. Lucia, Major Rosemarie Brown.
“Thy kingdom come, O God, They rule, O Christ, begin; Break with Thine iron rod, the tyrannies of sin,” were the first lyrics heard of the opening hymn as the “sweet” voices of the church choir and congregation, filled the historic building. Not only did the ministers of the gospel speak from the lectern, but also members of the legal fraternity.
The first lesson was read by Justice of Appeal, Sandra Mason, and the second by Vice President of the Barbados Bar Association, Liesel Weeks. The Roman Catholic Bishop delivered the sermon.
Once the service was ended, Sir Elliott returned to Government House, but the Chief Justice, other judicial officers and jurors departed for the Supreme Court Complex, where a guard of honour comprising members of the Royal Barbados Police Force and Band were waiting.
After inspecting the parade at the front of the complex, Sir Marston, addressed the Number 1 Supreme Court inside, amidst the fanfare of trumpets blown by police officers. Joining the Chief Justice on the bench were judges of the High Court and Courts of Appeal. (EJ)