Monthly Archives: August 2013

The Jordanites – By Peter Halder

Guyana Stories by Peter Halder

The Jordanites

by Peter Halder

 Colonial Era

Religion played a fundamental role in the British administration of its colony of British Guiana.

It was most probably the policy of the British that in a multiracial country with many races- African, East Indian, Chinese, Portuguese, the indigenous Amerindian, European and their inter-mixtures- and with different cultures and religious practices, the foundation, growth and spread of the Christian religion, could and would convert, indoctrinate, assimilate and unite the many races into a united nation. The colonialists went further. They recognized that the older generation was probably beyond conversion, indoctrination and assimilation, so their policy was to focus on the children, the new generation.

Churches dotted the landscape of Georgetown and environs, as well as the countryside.    Continue reading

Gingerbeer With A Difference

Guyana Stories by Peter Halder

Gingerbeer With A Difference

by Peter Halder

Fr Jeremiah Holyoak of the Church at Hunter Street and Punt Trench Dam, Albouystown,  made it his duty during the Christmas Season to visit his parishioners on Boxing Day.

He finished house calls on La Penitence Street and moved on to Bel Air Street. Between James Street and Sussex Street, he came to a cottage in which lived a single mother Rachel Adams and her son Timothy. The pair attended his Church Services every Sunday morning. They were there on Christmas morning.

Fr Jeremiah rapped on the light blue wooden door.

Timothy opened the door and smiled.

“Good morning Father, how are you today?” he said.

“I’m fine thank you Timothy. I am here on my usual Christmas visit to members of my congregation. Is your mother at home?” replied Fr Jeremiah.    Continue reading

THE PILOT

Guyana Stories by Peter Halder

THE PILOT

by Peter Halder

       I was deeply engaged in studying a file on a timber matter which I was to prosecute in court the next few days when I was interrupted  by a knock on the door of my room at the District Administration Office, Christianburg, Upper Demerara River.

Looking up angrily, I saw the Forest Ranger Berthold Baird open the door and push his head in.

Father Kilkenny is here to see you on an urgent matter,” Baird said.

“Okay, offer him a seat and tell him I will see him in a few minutes,” I replied.

I couldn’t concentrate on the file contents any longer so I closed the file and gave some thought to Fr.Kilkenny.     Continue reading

THE CHANTEY

Guyana Tales by Peter Halder

THE   CHANTEY

    by  Peter Halder

     Fr Alfred MacTaggart was the Priest -in-charge of St.Aidan’s Anglican Church at Wismar, Upper Demerara River.

The Church’s congregation was made up of persons from Wismar, Christianburg, Silvertown, Silver City, Wismar Hill and Mackenzie.

Fr. MacTaggart hailed from Scotland and his Scottish brogue oft intrigued his congregation when he delivered his sermon on Sundays.

His elocution, for whatever reason, was often punctuated by thin streams of spit.

The Father was also well- known for his strong  tenor voice. It gave vibrancy and appeal to the Hymns sung in Church on Sundays.    Continue reading

The Seventh Day Adventist Healer

Guyana Stories by Peter Halder

The Seventh Day Adventist Healer

by Peter Halder

     The Seventh Day Adventist Church was located along the Christianburg Main Road in the Christianburg/Wismar/Mackenzie District,Upper Demerara River. The Main Road, adjacent to the river, began at the northern end of Christianburg and ended a little past Sproston’s Stelling at Wismar.

The Pastor of the Church was Rev. Mordecai Baramboolah. He was the quintessence of quaintness. His head was as bald and smooth as the outside of a calabash. In fact, the top of his head resembled heaven – there is no parting in either place. He was tall and well-built, probably as a result of the quantity of food he consumed daily. Some in his flock nick-named him Pastor More. His forehead had as many furrows as bicycle tracks on the main road after a heavy rainfall. His eyebrows were thick and bushy and when asked about their unusual growth of hair, the Pastor said that it was neither here nor there.     Continue reading

The Gravediggers – by Peter Halder

Guyana Stories by Peter Halder.

The Gravediggers

by Peter Halder

Two gravediggers laboured at a plot on the eastern side of the white brick road in the Le Repentir Cemetery near the huge white gate at Sussex Street. They finished digging the hole for a grave at 5.45 just before the cemetery gates closed at 6.00 p.m. The mud they dug up was piled on two sides of the hole. Jumbie Jerrold told his friend Clement Graves that he was so tired, he will place four thick concrete paper containers at the bottom of the hole and take a short nap there before going home. He was soon fast asleep.    Continue reading