BVI News

‘The Minister gave me permission’, says Cline after curfew arrest

Bishop John Cline

While confirming that he was arrested on Sunday, March 29 for breaking the ongoing territorial curfew, head pastor of the New Life Baptist Church, Bishop John Cline described the ordeal as a ‘misunderstanding’.

Following the short-lived experience, Bishop Cline claimed he was given permission by Minister of Health Carvin Malone.

Cline said he had initially applied for 20 passes for his church members to attend a sermon on Sunday, but that request was denied.

“I was told by the ministry that I could [only] get three,” the Bishop said.

He further claimed that the passes were not given to him because the office issuing the passes had already closed on Friday.

Verbal authorisation

The clergyman said he proceeded to contact Minister Malone via telephone, and during their conversation, he was given verbal permission to attend church.

“I told him the names of the persons, I told him the time, and then he said to me, ‘OK, you can go ahead’,” the Bishop said.

Cline further claimed that Malone advised him that the relevant authorities would have been made aware. But, at approximately 11 am on Sunday, the police visited his church in Duffs Bottom on Tortola and accosted him.

He said he along with three others were at the church, but he was the only one without a physical pass. The others were government workers, and they had their passes for their respective jobs.

Live online sermon

Their presence at the church was to conduct a live sermon and to stream a pre-recorded praise and worship session to their audience via social media.

Cline said while the police did not put handcuffs on him, he was told that he was under arrest. He was then taken to the Road Town Police Station where the minister in question reportedly confirmed to the police that he had in fact given the bishop permission to be at church.

Cline was subsequently cautioned and released.

When BVI News contacted Police Information Officer Akia Thomas she said she was unable to give the name of the individual. She, however, said: “I can confirm the arrest of one male for breach of curfew. He was cautioned and warned for the offence and released.”

BVI News’ attempts to contact Malone to corroborate Bishop Cline’s claims were unsuccessful up to press time.

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  1. Just saying .... says:

    Excellent! I love it! Shame the Minister bailed you out, because I would have left you in jail for the balance of the curfew. Think you are above everyone don’t you? Jack a$$!

    Like 58
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    • Mike Tyson says:

      That man have a punchable face….every pic I see of him,make me want to Tyson his @ $$

      Like 28
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      • Bishop? says:

        Who made this us—–s t–d a Bishop. Did he attend an online class for Bishops..lmao. Are you all so s—–d to support someone like this. The man puts his f—k in danger so that he can spout his s— from a pulpit. Stick his a$$ in prison and let him preach from there for a year. Someone please send info on who made this q—k a bishop.

        Like 6
        Dislike 1
        • Cardinal Rubber Duck says:

          Anyone may award themselves a religious title and use it to prey on the gullible and weak minded.

      • Smh says:

        @mike Tyson of course you’d like too! I mean name one of the devil children who wouldn’t want too? Yet no matter what you try you can’t manage it, you can’t for you know not God. Give your heart purely to God and repent. God is a loving and forgiving God. You and your 16+ supports need to realize God is real!!

        • Hamlamb says:

          It is not possible to accept a caution unless you admit the offense. Either he admitted the offense or he was not cautioned. Which was it?
          The public service employees’ passes permit them to leave their homes only to perform their public service duties – the passes do not permit them to go to the church. They should have been arrested and had their passes confiscated.

          Like 17
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    • Another says:

      Just another Belonger who thinks he’s above the law. And just to prove it, his Belonger buddies bail him out. Tri third world shit. The Territory will never be anything while this Belonger crap continues

      Like 25
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      • SMDH says:

        Strupps. If it bothers you so much you can be in your own country where you can tout all rights and status and not have to put up with the BVI crap.

        Like 5
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      • Belonged Crap says:

        Stop that belonger crap! I’m a belonger and I think it’s bull s..t. Plain and simple.

    • Of course says:

      Of course you love it. Why wouldn’t you love it? Your team Satan. This is what pleasure you. God won team devil lost. Don’t take it out with me but take it out with God, ask him why he didn’t grant your wish? Next pray for it instead of wishing for it. Huge difference.

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  2. Well Malone says:

    If you give pastor permission to do such, you should be blasted by your BOSS. No exceptions for anyone. You are the Health Minister and should have known better.

    Like 81
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  3. island man says:

    He should have also asked for police escort so as to avoid any drama.

    Like 15
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  4. smh says:

    WHY are they still playing with people’s lives. The first attempt to stop the virus coming onto the island was breached by people not doing what they were told and ADVISED to do. So you now go do the BIG lockdown and are still JUST warning and releasing! Seriously, what is the point of laws and rules? It has to be ALL or NONE complying! If you break the law…. go to jail and not take the chance of infecting law-abiding people.

    Like 48
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  5. Windy says:

    Such B S from such a little piece of …

    Like 29
  6. Jim Jones says:

    This man is allowed to play the government like a fiddle….why because he’s a bishop? I guess his followers will gladly drink when asked? SMH

    Like 53
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  7. Listen says:

    so you’re excluded for this territorial curfew ? Like really stay home , social distancing for a few days you cant comply with buddy.talking about permission from minister, you’ll have a sermon to talk about ur “lil” run in with the LAW come next sunday. Smh

    Like 32
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  8. 007 says:

    This is the biggest problem that we face in the BVI. Laws are made and certain people because of who they are and what their last name is are allowed to break them or we give unreasonable leniency that others aren’t allowed to get. Having church with just 3 other people is not a reason to grant anybody permission to be on the road.

    The same Facebook post that he doing he can have a service from his home for his followers.
    When people see the law being biased like this we turn normally mild mannered people to view the law makers and law enforcers as corrupt. That’s why people that aren’t from here get the misconception that people that aren’t from here are treated differently than locals.

    You open the door for one then you cant be upset when everybody start to request similar favors. Minister you made a law stop enabling people to break it. You putting the police in a compromising position because others will say that he do it then I can do it.

    Like 79
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    • Upfullness. says:

      I agree 007 – all he had to do was to get the sound and camera man move the equipments to his house before Friday 8pm set it up and he could do a quality broadcast from home on Sunday.

  9. Smell a rat says:

    The passes are being distributed from the police station. These passes were being distributed all of yesterday….. perhaps you should do your research before ***** (again) Cline.

    Like 24
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  10. vip heckler says:

    Ayo see what these politicians doing? Breaking the same rules that the made on friday

    Like 47
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    • @VIP heckler says:

      For real man, that does not look good on this Administration. The phones is buzzing off the hook with people KIKIING wondering how many more favors was granted and by whom.That is messed up.

      Like 17
      • Pastor Fraud says:

        @VIP heckler,

        Is the other pastor CSC an essential worker? I heard he has a pass to be out and about?

        Like 10
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        • Observer 1 says:

          it would be interesting to learn just how many passes were issued. This is a population of less than 30k; so I cannot see any reason why more than 500 passes should have been issued territory wide.
          Please tell us! How many passes were issued?

          Like 8
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  11. nature's dirty little secrets says:

    The bishop threw carvin under the bus

    Like 48
    • He sure did says:

      He threw Carvin directly under the moving bus. Can you imagine the look on pastor face when the police burst in that church? PASTOR: THE HEALTH MINISTER give me permission. POLICE: NO EXCEPTIONS, turn around and place your hands behind your back.LMAO.

      Like 32
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  12. strupes says:

    Lock up both ah dem

    Like 25
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  13. shabba says:

    sue! sue! sue!

    Dislike 15
  14. Abide the Law says:

    This is so disappointing to here. It’s a great idea to do an online service but do it from your home! The house of God is in our hearts not in a building. Don’t be a fool…it is a sin to break the law. You of all people should be a good example to the people of God. It is also a sin to tell lies. Malone does not have the power to break the law by giving you permission. If he really did. Very sad indeed. Shame on you Bishop! And furthermore…if the others had passes it is for their jobs not to assist you! Just because people have passes it doesn’t mean they can go about everywhere. They are supposed to still practice the provisions put in place to save us all.

    Like 52
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  15. Abide the Law says:

    This is so disappointing to hear. It’s a great idea to do an online service but do it from your home! The house of God is in our hearts not in a building. Don’t be a fool…it is a sin to break the law. You of all people should be a good example to the people of God. It is also a sin to tell lies. Malone does not have the power to break the law by giving you permission. If he really did. Very sad indeed. Shame on you Bishop! And furthermore…if the others had passes it is for their jobs not to assist you! Just because people have passes it doesn’t mean they can go about everywhere. They are supposed to still practice the provisions put in place to save us all.

    Like 10
    Dislike 1
  16. Law says:

    Here lies our number 1 issue in the BVI- authorities bend the laws for who they please. From my understanding, the passes were to be given to persons to allow them to conduct official duties. The government workers that were present were in violation as recording church services was not on the list of essential services. They should have been charged.

    Secondly, I am greatly disappointed in the government minister who is caught up in this drama. Better was expected of him.

    Let’s get serious about our affairs. We can’t blame our youths for being lawless when so many persons that are in high places are setting such poor examples.

    Like 72
  17. Ok says:

    So the Minister gave him permission. Ok what is the issue?

    Like 2
    Dislike 39
  18. If says:

    Whoever give the pastor permission to do this, needs to be reprimanded by the Premier and the Governor.

    Like 55
    • Totally Agreed says:

      Mr. Health Minister, I am disappointed. Your Administration is working tirelessly to do everything to assure that we are all safe and you are here granting favors? Yes, granting favors for a c** man who seem to think he is above the law. What goes for one should go for all. Not a good look for your Administration and should be reprimanded for your behavior. Makes one wonder who else was granted special favors.

      Like 32
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      • CSC?‍♂️?‍♂️ says:

        @Totally Agreed,

        I heard the other pastor CSC had a pass to out and about. Is he an essential worker?

  19. Truth says:

    Truly people are destroy for the lack of knowledge, what was so urgent that you couldn’t say some other time that cases you to get lock up, i understand maybe you are lonely , but church isn’t in the building its in your heart, this is a time of consecration separation were you can spend time in prayer and fasting renewing your faith covenant with God .they should have lock you for a week seeing that you don’t want to stay at your home .

    Like 31
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  20. Reply says:

    Message to Mr. Cline:

    This is not about you nor your church. This is about the lives of others who may become infected with Covid-9 during any gathering, regardless of size which will result in needless deaths.

    This is about saving lives. The covid-9 virus has no respect for anyone. There is no cure, vaccine, or meaningful treatment to halt the spread of this raging pandemic.

    Thus the need for the measures that not only the BVI has instituted and found necessary, but every country around the world has instituted in some form as well. I applaud the government for the actions it has taken thus far to protect us all.

    The only tools mankind has at the moment to combat the spread of this disease is testing, social distancing, quarantines, and curfews as needed.

    Rather than seeking exemptions to the current curfew, try following it, or risk getting re-arrested or fined.

    If you fail to follow the rules like everyone else given that you reportedly previously stated you would not comply with the curfew, you deserve to be locked up the next go round.

    IMO, the Minister of Health is a good man; however, I believe he should have turned down your request for any gathering outright, and told you that is not a good idea in the interest of the public’s health.

    An exemption extended to you, will surely cause others to seek one, thereby endangering everyone.

    The BVi is in no way capable of handling 10 or more people on ventilators should the need arises in an attempt to save lives.

    God forbid that many people become ill from this virus or even more, people would certainly die. Our country would not be able to handle all these sick people.

    You once headed the BVI Health Authority. Of all people, you should know more than most the capabilities of the hospital. You should know that Peebles Hospital will not be able to handle a large influx of sick patients needing ventilators.

    Please follow the rules and act responsibly, and that goes for all other churches, their leaders, and their members. Do not risk the lives of others for short term goals. We can all pray at home.

    We are living in underrepresented times. Hopefully, the world would find a cure or adequate treatment for this terrible virus, and we can all one day get back to some sense of normalcy.

    But until then, utilize whatever technology you have availability to you to conduct your services from the safety of your home.

    So do society a favor, and lead by example. I’ll pray for you, and you pray for me, and lets all pray for each other that one day soon this pandemic will be over.

    Like 55
    • Reply says:

      That should read Covid-19

    • 007 says:

      Christians can get the virus too and infect other Christians and even the “unsaved”. Bad things happen to Christians all the time. There are people that were murdered inside of churches so acting like having church will save the World or the BVI from corona is being naïve. I know lots of Christians that died from cancer and other diseases. I dont think anybody is happy with the curfew but most people are following the law and not begging for favors.
      Being out puts others at risk. Look how that scooter rider got in an accident with the goat while being out during the curfew and needed assistance from 2 people. If the scooter man have the virus knowingly or not he just put 2 other people at risk. That’s how the virus spreads.

      Like 19
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    • gramatist says:


      • LCS says:

        “Christians Who died” ;not THAT died, is the correct grammar. Nowadays this error is very common in writing and verbally. I cringed.

  21. Stupez says:

    Mr Malone should also have known better than to give you that permission knowing fully well that authority comes only from the governor himself , but were there is no vision and lock of understanding, what you trying to prove we already know that your ignorant already and blind to the truth ,you just been a mockery to the gospel, what you really so post to really get lock up for like the apostles Daniel paul three Hebrews boys for speaking truth standing up for righteousness representing and presenting the true and living God, but this stupes.

    Like 20
  22. Question? says:

    Why did Mr. Cline feel it necessary to record at his church during the curfew? Other pastors took this opportunity to record Sunday’s sermon days in advance before the curfew began. Why did he apologize for his earlier record but still continued this behavior like the pharaoh of Egypt? Is he so spiritually depraved as those without God that he cannot see the death angel all around us, and all around the world? Does he care for the people of God or his status quo, financial and/or otherwise? Is the body of Christ a building or a people?

    Additionally, why did the Minister of Health allow this activity?

    Like 17
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  23. Anonymous says:

    When is the BVI Gov. really going to put their foot down and stop all this back and forth and pick and choose? There is a lockdown curfew in place..enforce it for everyone NOW not 2 or 3 weeks from now. Don’t advise… mandate…. don’t warn….jail. Do what you say you are going to do and protect us all.

    Like 17
  24. Reverend Ike says:

    He could of hold church on FB live instead of going Duff Bottom. You could tell he wilful from the what’s app voice note

    Like 24
  25. KB says:

    Two words: Napoleon Complex

    Like 23
  26. Hmmm says:

    This was a well planned publicity stunt! BRAVO Bishop! You did it!

    He also led three blind sheep to the slaughter. Our police should have arrested them for being stupid enough to allow this man to encourage them to break the law. It seems like they are more dedicated to the bishop than they are to the word of God.

    Thirdly, the honorable made a less than honorable decision. It makes me question his integrity. Mr. Premier, this type of behavior should be discouraged within your administration.

    Like 27
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  27. Law is law says:

    Cautioned and released for breaking the law? Pray tell why?

    Like 12
  28. 007 says:

    Hon. Carvin Malone failed to comply with quarantine protocols for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), by giving permission to John Cline and 3 other persons, this is a lock down where anyone breaking the law should be charged. Cline said he was going to break the law he did and you helped him, both of you should be charged.

    Like 26
    Dislike 1
    • 007 says:

      Dude, I know I’m being hypocritical for telling you to get your own screen name since I “borrowed” it from James Bond but dude c’mon you see me posted twice already using the name and you still copy like really. C’mon you cant be that lame.

      Like 5
      Dislike 1
  29. EGO over Spirituality says:

    he hasn’t changed and maybe never will.
    Can God use him? . . . maybe.
    disappointing to see someone in such a position of influence act so foolishly. then pass off the blame like a little child.

    Like 14
  30. Example says:

    Is it that you wants to be in the lie light so bad ,

    It leave persons to really wonder if mr Malone really given permission are he looking for a way out to cover up your stupidity proud arrogant attitudes
    I wondered if they spoken with Mr Malone about this if he did or didn’t.

    Sir you also making mr malone look incompetent of carrying out ministerial studies and position .

    Because no body no one is above the law doesn’t matter who you are what your last name , this virus doesn’t respect anybody rich poor old young black green white born here or not.

    One of our issues here in the bvi is that about obedience

    As a man who professed to a Paster who should be leading from the front setting the example very disappointed really expected better .

    They should have keep you lock up for the week , if was someone else they would have, because you clearly stated that you will comply after been enterviewed you still when back on your words , it tells us that you can’t be trusted

    Lord Jesus Christ have mercy upon us forgive us for we has become a rebellious nation going about doing our own thing , no wonder we are going through all this but God is merciful.

    Like 11
  31. Sad but God is good says:

    This was your plan from the beginning hots of for sir .But God is good and vengeance belongs to him no sins goes un punished, Lord Jesus forgive him for he knows what he has done we continue to pray for his deliverance in Jesus name , today is a day of prayer and repentance and all of us has sin some what Let God be God and everyman a liar …

  32. Son of God says:

    My question is to sir you said that you gotten permission from the mr malone a mere flesh man , but did you ask are consulted acknowledged with the Lord Jesus Christ first in prayer.Script clearly states that in all our ways we must acknowledged him and he will direct our paths , we must .who is above all who created all things ,spiritually this speak value you needs deliverance in Jesus name i am praying for you petsonally because i know that you means well you just been side track and distracted, doing the right things but the wrong way i would Love to talk to you see when you get it right you hasnt started yet , when you do you will be a force to be reckoned with trust me on this we continue to pray God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we can ask are think praise God.

  33. Real one says:

    This is a disgrace and a slap in the face for the people of the BVI. Isn’t that the same Minister want persons to quarantine themselves or a hefty charge of 5k or time in prison then with same breath he give Mr. Cline permission to have a church service. That’s bias, what goes for one goes for all I am so disappointed with the Minister’s action. I know breaching the curfew that person will face the consequences regardless of who is the person. This shows the laws are set up for the small man. It clearly shows disrespect to the global epidemic and putting other people’s life at risk. Not even the churches can save anyone in these times this is all God’s work and a message he’s sending to us all on earth. Stay at home let the Lord cleanse the earth, way too much ungodly practices are happening so we all have to our lives and others by staying home.

    Like 11
    Dislike 1
  34. Ausar says:

    The real question that begs to be asked is: How will the Premier deal with this manner?

    All that noise, Premier, about consequences to lack of obeisance, and NOTHING happens in this instance!

    I guess, all one has to do is make a declaration of worship hours, and, its a go-go from there!

    Let me tell ya something Premier: We are all trying to survive this “thing”!

    And your lack of leadership in this response is regretful and worrisome!

    Thanks,Premier,but no thanks!

    Like 8
    Dislike 1
  35. Boo says:

    Honestly the Minister has no power to give what he is not given the power under legislation so to do. John is grasping at straws with this whole Carvin told him he could story. In my view its an extension of his whole train wreck of a publicity stunt.

    It’s like saying you broke the law because dude over there told me I could then expect to get away with that.

    Utter hogwash and bullocks

    Like 12
  36. ok says:

    He did exactly what he said he was going to do!
    The government did exactly what they said they would not do. ‘
    He got the attention he wanted, he doesn’t care about spreading the virus or being a good spiritual leader. He just wants the limelight anyway he can get it.

    Like 11
  37. Huge says:

    House fancy boat f— christian f–e bishop lookin a virtual c————-n jar. 10 percent and a free koolaid..put him in jail for breaking the l–

  38. oouch! ouch! says:

    Pastors or Bishops should lead the way, and their congregation in being law abiding citzens. God’s word is build on obedience to God’s word. How in tarnishing name can a Bishop show such lack of respect for the laws to protect and save lives. Those who went to support are more foolish than him. wisdom is lacking on the Pastor’s part. BE A LAW ABIDING MODEL CITZEN NO EXCEPTION-what can you tell the young people who are breaking traffic rules or show lack of respect for authority. He made the Minister of Health LOOK COMPROMISING and DOUBLE STANDARDS. Mr. MINister dont trust him anymore. He expose you big time.

  39. HeHE!! says:

    He was pompous. He circulated a speech that says they would have to arrest him but he would open church. Not above the law. Perhaps he wanted to collect offering hehe!! Humour

    Like 11
  40. Resident says:

    But didn’t he say that they were launching the dangerous 5G technology this weekend,so people should try and stay home to protect themselves?
    This man is unstable.

    Like 11
    • Lodger says:

      Yes. Everyone else seems to have missed this statement he made. Apparently 5G signals bounce off powerful radioactive reflector balloons tethered over the Caribbean, and that is what is spreading the virus! Really?

  41. Essential Workers says:

    So these government workers were doing essential work at the church? These passes have time limits? This is out of hand because it does not seem to be well thought out. The essential workers should be given allowance based on work schedule and driving specific routes.

  42. Mmmyeah says:

    If our authorities are to retain credibility, Cline needs to pay fine. The 3 need disciplinary action too because the passes are for essential business, not for this tripe.
    Carvin may have done no such thing but if he did, he needs to be publicly admonished by Prem and Gov and possibly replaced. The HEALTH minister, at this time of thousands of deaths and knowing we have scarce resources, cannot condone this stunt and this wilful breach of our emergency controls.

    Have some standards. Lives are at stake.

    Like 14
  43. TRUTH says:

    He’s behaving just like DONALD TRUMP he believes he’s above the Law.

    Like 8
    Dislike 2
  44. foot soilder says:

    This decision on the part of Govt. is to save lives and contain the virus. Bishop, if the govt made a rule that dishonours God you show your staunch by obeying God rather than man. However, this was not the case. Do not hide behind the cloth to overrule and then justify your disobedience to the curfew. Lead your congregation by example and adhere. Dont tempt fate!! . Anyway,you had already circulated a voice audio stating you intentions of defying the curfew before you actually did it.The passes from the other members were for essential services. Faith based gatherings was not listed as an essential service. No justification for your behaviour. You need to apologize to your congregation and the public.Be level headed not decisions based on emotions

  45. Wow says:

    You can tell those who goes to church and of God and why just recite scriptures. 99.99 of you’ll who hear blogging needs to seek a church and get involved. Let go from the hate you’ll have in the heart. It’s not good. Ain’t healthy. It’s worse than the Rona. You’ll wanted the Bishop to get arrested and go to jail, yet you’ll forget who’s his Shepherd?? You’ll forget no weapons that form against me shall prosper? Come on it’s Monday you ain’t really actually care if he gets lock up or not, you’ll just need something to get you’ll minds off you’ll own problem! It’s a new week. End of month, hope you’ll have the people them money for them etc. should have spent the weekend praying and fasting. The lord is my shepherd and I shall not want. My health is good. My bills are paid. My family and friend’s don’t need for want. God’s been amazing. Give him a chance he can be amazing for you as well.

    Dislike 10
    • @Wow says:

      Nobody wants anyone to get locked up but when people blatantly state and defy the law, what do u want the authorities to do?
      Did the Bible say we were to defy the laws of the land?
      Stop following people blindly. Use common sense and ask God for wisdom. Bishop John Cline been behaving erratic and he needs help…

  46. To WOW says:

    This post gave me a headache. I dont know how many of “you’ll” got one as well.

  47. bishop says:

    Romans 13-Obey the laws of the land! You should know this!!

  48. Well says:

    Imagine something as major as the Health of the Nation is at stake and this is the alleged behaviour of the Minister? I can only imagine what other permissions have been granted

  49. Mmmmmm says:

    How can any one take this man seriously? He is a total joke. His actions was premeditated. If you dont know how to follow you will know how to lead.

  50. Bishop Crime says:

    I think he is bishass and Malone should be ashamed of himself and remembered very well next ELECTION. We have to start making these people accountable for their actions. Take notes!

  51. Reply says:

    The permission for the “others government workers” is for their respective jobs, not to go to the church.
    They should be arrested, too.

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