Montserratians, residents and friends of Montserrat, on this Christmas Day, I extend season’s greetings to you and your families where ever you are listening to my voice or reading this message.
I am delighted to extend best wishes, on behalf of the Government of Montserrat, to each and every one, as we celebrate this Christmas.
At this time of the year, we must not simply focus on the festivities, but also on being thankful to God, that He has allowed us to see another Christmas day. Indeed, we have so much to be thankful for.
This is not to say that we did not experience challenges this year—of course we did. But together we have found solutions to various problems and have collectively worked in the best interest of this land.
We must express gratitude to the most high because while we are here and able to spread love, joy, and happiness with each other, there are many who started the year with us but have since left this earthly realm. And so for many families, today may not be a time for celebration as they reminisce over their loss.
It is therefore my hope that we all find some way to connect with persons who have loss a family member during the year and who may find this family centered celebration difficult.
Additionally, as we embody the spirit of Christmas; spreading joy, peace, love and happiness to all, I want to remind you (as I always do at this time of the year) to extend a hand of kindness to the seniors and less fortunate living among us—pay a visit, give them a call and of course share a meal so that they too can experience the real joy and essence of Christmas.
As a Government, we continue to work in the best interest of the people; trying our best to find solutions to rising cost of living, while advancing our infrastructural development plans, which will pave the way for a better Montserrat, with more opportunities for persons across all walks of life.
These include the Port Development Project; the hospital project; the refurbishment of the Margetson Memorial Home and the Restoration work being conducted to transform the old Salem Primary School into a Community Centre. These are a few of the major projects which have commenced this year and will continue into the New Year.
As I observe these projects being implemented, it confirms my belief that we are on the right track, and I pray that you see these projects as a sign of hope, that better days are ahead.
Our recent attendance at the Joint Ministerial Council (JMC) and bilateral meetings in the UK, have started the groundwork for other impactful projects and programmes for Montserrat.
These include building capacity in the public service, building resilience in sewage and water management, food security, possibilities for export partnerships with the UK and renewable energy solutions, as geothermal development discussion is taken to the next level.
I can assure you that we will continue these discussions with our UK partners in the New Year, as we work towards the betterment of Montserrat.
The need to forge meaningful partnerships and opportunities for collaboration cannot be under-estimated and is indeed critical for us.
Our goal is the same— improvement, growth and progress for Montserrat, and together we can achieve that.
Today as you join with friends and family, I want to admonish you to allow this spirit of togetherness to follow you into the New Year and beyond.
My family and I wish each and every one of you a Merry Christmas – God's richest blessings for a happy and safe holiday and festive season.
Hon Joseph E. Farrell
Premier of Montserrat