Born March 22, 1930. Died August 26, 2000. Sir Lynden Oscar Pindling guided the nation of the Bahamas from 1967 while it was still a colony of Britain towards independence in 1973 and became the first prime minister serving his country for more than 25 years. Revered by Bahamians as "The Father of the Bahamas" he was re-elected to office 5 times, and played a significant role in the development of the Bahamas as the Tourism and offshore banking center it is today.
From the early morning hours of Monday, September, 4, 2000, thousands lined the streets of Nassau, from Rawson Square to East Street, to view the procession for the state funeral of the Rt. Honorable Sir Lynden Oscar Pindling, former prime minister of the Bahamas, and a brother of the Seventh-day Adventist church. It certainly was the largest funeral in the Bahamas.
The funeral procession left the House of Parliament, Rawson Square, Nassau at 10:15 a.m. The family, and members of the House of Assembly, were led by the Royal Bahamas Police Force and Royal Bahamas Defense Force Bands. After the service, thousands again lined the streets from the Church of God of Prophecy to St. Agnes Cemetery on Nassau Street. The procession route to the cemetery was south on East Street, then west on Wulff Road, north on Blue Hill Road, west on Meeting street to Nassau Street. The State Funeral began promptly at 11:00 a.m. and ended at 4:00 p.m. Yes it was long, but inspirational. The grave-side ceremony was short. However, the procession to the cemetery took over an hour. The entire ceremony ended around 6:00 p.m.
In a ceremonial fashion, the Bahamian flag, that was stately draping Sir Lynden Pindling's casket, was folded and given to Lady Pindling. Many years ago Sir Lynden performed a memorable feat. In an act of protest and determination to end injustices against the Bahamian people, Sir Lynden threw the Mace out of a second floor House of Parliament window. Then Sir Milo Butler took the hour glass that was used to measure speaking time for parliamentarians, and threw it out of the window. This was the beginning of change. The Mace, a symbol of the authority of the government, was seen in the parade today, leading the procession. It was carried by a Cabinet Clerk, Mr. Randy Forbes. Mr. Forbes is a Seventh-day Adventist.
The sun was hot today. But the 90-degree temperature did not hinder the enthusiastic crowd. Outside the church, hundreds watched via closed circuit television. Inside the Church of God of Prophecy giant auditorium on East Street, two thousand guests and family members listened to the many leaders recounting the great accomplishments of Sir Lynden. The Father of the Modern Bahamas is now one of his official titles.
The tribute of Obie Pindling, the son of Sir Lynden was most touching. He said "To many, our father was a politician. To us, his children, he was our daddy. He was a committed dad." Obie’s son also gave a tribute. It was thrilling to hear this young chap also named Lynden Oscar Pindling, speaking so eloquently. He said last week he went with his parents to view his grandfathers’ body. Sir Lynden was laying is state in the foyer of the House of Parliament until the funeral today. During that week he heard for the first time that his grand father, Sir Lynden, had thrown the Mace out of the window. He asked a man standing nearby which window did his grandfather throw the Mace out of. The man showed him. This little boy then said "When I get eighteen I am also going to throw the Mace out of the window." The congregation burst into laughter.
Pastor Hugh Roach inspired the listeners with a pinpointing message. The sermon was filled with spiritual insights and contemporary anecdotes the lifted the spirits of everyone. He took the crowed through the journeys of Sir Lynden, form the early day to his retirement. He reminded us about Sir Lynden’s passion and the political themes that motivated him: Step Now! Step Now!
During this weekend, the Adventist church surely was in the light. All of the sermons were inspirational. Pastor Michael Smith spoke on Sabbath afternoon at Hillview Church. Pastor Keith Albury spoke on Sunday afternoon at the National Memorial Service. Pastor Hugh Roach spoke at the State Funeral on Sunday, September 4, 2000.
The Spiritual Birth
Let us keep Sir Lynden’s family in our prayers. Sir Lynden re-joined the Adventist Church in 1996. He was baptized at the Centreville church on December 10 of that year. Sir Lynden grew up attending the Grant’s Town Seventh-day Adventist Church. At the age of eighteen he went to England to begin his law studies. When his returned home years later, his relationship with the church diminished. However, he was always fond of Adventism, and kept the principles in his heart. Following his baptism he became very active in church. He sang in the Hillview Adventist Men’s Choir, occasionally taught Sabbath lesson, and was always willing to help and share the gospel.
A great Bahamian hero and Adventist brother is dead. We await the glorious resurrection.Article By Barrington BrennenPoem By Dennis Arthur Dames