Bassy - Love Vine
December 16, 2022
Beloved Bishop Dickson De Fearless

I want to identify wid de Catholic Community who last month, on November 29, celebrated de promotion to Glory of our dearly beloved, Bishop Emeritus, Anthony Dickson.

He was de first Bishop of Bo-bathe-us and was in charge of both Kingstown (SVG) and Bridgetown (B’dos) R.C Circuits.

About 50 years ago in de 1970’s we both served on de SVG Christian Council (CC) dat was comprised of the four Major Churches: “ Cat-lic, Anglican, Met-dis and Salvation Army.”

My fondest mem’ry of Bishop was in 1975 during the now famous “1975 SVG Teachers Strike.” P.M. Cato had refused to meet to dialogue wid de Teachers and dey was ah dead-lock. De C.C. met de executive of de SVUT and felt de teachers had strong valid issues, but Cato was anti- trade union and disrespectful, very much like his current successor. De more ting change, de more dey remain de same.

De tone of dat 1975 meeting suddenly switched from ole talk to ah call foh act-shun from an emotional Bishop Dickson who invited all members of both sides, to join hands and take ah peaceful walk from de Council’s office in de Verbeke Cente along Back Street uptown to PM Cato’s Office and demand an audience.

Council members looked at each other in shock, as if to say: “Bishop Dickson gone mad or what?!” Absolutely not. Dat was exactly 47 years ago last month, and de Bishop was very much years ahead of his time.

His hallmark to fame fooled nuff people because he was Humble and Fearless, truly ah Man of God, just following in de foot-steps of Jesus 2000 years ago. All de Gospel writers said de same thing: “Jesus made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple courts, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables.” Lie-Za say “Déjà vu” like how ULP treated dem Street Vendors.

But unfortunately de Christian Council of 47 years ago was no different dan dey are today, ah bunch ah coward, chicken hearted men wid-out Guts! WE opted to “ shelve de Bishop’s suggest-shun,” and promised to write Cato asking foh an audience. And as was expected he never phart pon us. That 1975 meeting of de SVUT and de C.C took place on de Tuesday of dat week. On de Fry-dey, three days after, de teachers armed wid placards, “Pen and Paper”, took to de streets in ah Peaceful demon-stray-shun, a March around de Town; de rest is now His-story.

Police tear gas our teachers, members of de Union’s Executive, people like Yvonne Francis and Mike Browne who later became ministers of Go-venom-mint, were targeted, arrested, charged and dumped in filthy cells foh de week-end. Yet all charges against de teachers were dismissed.

Today if only we had Bishops and church leaders like Bishop Dickson, our front-line teachers, nurses and police who refused to tek de vax-scene, would not have been fired by dis wicked ULP Administray-shun.

And up to dis day ah strongly believe dat had we on de Christian Council, taken Bishop Dickson’s suggestion, and march into Cato’s office wid de teachers, dey would not have been ah Tear Gas Day! Ah also firmly believe dat if de Good Bishop was conscious last month November, de Anniversary of Tear Gas Friday, he would have faithfully pronounced God’s Blessings pon all teachers, especially these who are now suffering in defiance of ah wicked piece ah COVID-19 Vax-ah-nay-shun Ledge-is-slay-shun. May Bishop Dickson enjoy Peaceful Rest wid de Master.
And wid dat is gone ah gone again.

One Love Bassy

Bassy Alexander is a land surveyor, folklorist and social commentator.