More than 300 persons attended the annual Portmore Deanery Day Service on Sunday, September 18 at St. Paul’s Church in Greater Portmore.
The day’s activities under the theme “Save One More Life” focused on road safety; and involved representatives of the National Road Safety Council (NRSC) who discussed with members ways in which the church can support the Council’s efforts to reduce road traffic injuries and deaths.
Rev. Michael Elliott, Rector of the Church of the Holy Spirit, presided at the Service, which was preceded by a road safety march accompanied by members of the Police Traffic Division. Rev. Elliott was assisted by the Very Rev. Robert McLean, Dean of Portmore; and the Sermon was delivered by Dr. Lucien Jones, Vice-Chairman of the NRSC and Lay Reader at St. Andrew Parish Church.
Dr. Jones focussed on the Old Testament reading in which the prophet Jeremiah cried out to God on behalf of his people who were suffering miserably because of their repeated disobedience. A people who had forgotten about the God who had rescued them from bondage in Egypt. He suggested that Jamaica too, had committed a similar sin, and rebelled against the God who rescued its people from slavery; hence the many social, political, moral and economic problems, including crime and violence, as well as, road fatalities afflicting the nation.
He asserted that only Jesus could Save One More Life. And, he noted that ultimately, only people who had become one with Christ, and were empowered with his love and mercy, could help to rescue Jamaica, rescue people from road crashes, and be successful in Saving One More Life.
Following the Service, there were video and slide presentations by members of the Police Traffic Division and Mr. Khenute Hare, Director of the Road Safety Unit of the Ministry of Transport. Dr. Jones also announced that the long-awaited new Road Traffic Act was tabled in Parliament on September 16.
Provisions of this legislation include:
- mandatory use of a hands-free instrument if a cell phone is used while driving
- automatic suspension of a Driver’s Licence by the Island traffic Authority once the number of demerit points exceed the prescribed limit
- revision of the ‘tyre standard’ to make it explicit and easily measurable
- revision of driver training requirements for both cars and motor bikes