CASTRIES, St. Lucia, CMC – A senior official of the Methodist Church has expressed concern at what he termed “money making” churches that have appeared in St. Lucia virtually overnight.
“I am very concerned. Nowadays we are making the church into a business entity,” said Seth Ampadu, the Superintendent Minister of the Methodist Church here.
Playing on the vulnerability of others
He said many people were playing on the vulnerability of others by appointing themselves apostles, doctors and prophets.
“These people are scamming them, taking money from them,” Ampadu said, noting “there are so many churches springing up, all because they see the church as a place where they can make money.
“They are using the church as a money-making machine to make themselves rich,” the clergyman said, without going into details.
Time to regulate churches
Ampadu said it was time the authorities regulate those churches, otherwise the ‘so called pastors’ will use the people and take their money without paying taxes to the government.
“This is very serious,” he said, adding “you ask yourself ‘how much do they pay to the government? Do they have schools? Do they have hospitals and other things?
“Where do they keep their money? What do they use their money for?’ These are some of the things I feel the government should investigate.
“I think the church is there to meet the social and spiritual needs of the people. The church has to give, not take. But it seems today that they are doing the opposite – exploiting the people and it is very bad,” the Methodist Church official said.