Pastor Al Ebanks passes

    ‘Counselor to a nation’

    Ebanks, Al

    Pastor Al Ebanks, the leader of the Agape Family Worship Centre in George Town, passed away late Friday, according to Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Wil Pineau. 

    Mr. Pineau announced the death of Pastor Al – who had been ill for a number of months – during a healthcare conference being held on Grand Cayman Saturday.

    “Pastor Al led a life of service,” Mr. Pineau said to conference attendees, many of whom stood and bowed their heads in observance of a moment of silence. 

    Pastor Al, 52, most recently served as chairman of the newly formed Cayman Islands Constitutional Commission, which had responsibility for reviewing the country’s governance arrangements with the United Kingdom. He was also a long-time member of the Cayman Islands Health Services Authority Board of Directors, which runs the Cayman Islands hospital system.

    But Pastor Ebanks is likely to be remembered more for his church services and efforts to assist the less fortunate in the local community.

    “When I heard of his passing, I was beside myself, distraught,” said Premier McKeeva Bush. “I really didn’t expect him to pass now.”

    Mr. Bush said he and Pastor Al went to school together in West Bay as children, the Premier being just a few years older.

    “The country has lost a good man,” Premier Bush said, adding that he wished to send condolences to Pastor Al’s sisters, wife and family. “He was a man of God.” 

    “He was just a counselor to the nation,” said Opposition Leader Alden McLaughlin, a long-time friend of Pastor Al’s. “I don’t know that there’s any other person in Cayman that has that level of love and respect as Pastor Al.” 

    Julene Banks, who served on the Constitutional Commission with Pastor Al, said she has known him since childhood. 

    “We have lost a wonderful, loving, compassionate man, but his light will shine on,” Mrs. Banks said. 

    In remembering Pastor Al, she quoted from Psalm 24 – the section of the Holy Bible from which Cayman’s motto – ‘he hath founded it upon the seas’ was derived. 

    “Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord? Who may stand in His holy place? The one who has clean hands and a pure heart.

    “That sums up Pastor Al,” she said. 

    Pastor Al is preceded in death by his eldest son. He is survived by his wife and three children.

    Biography

    Pastor Al, whose full legal name is Alden A. Ebanks, was born on 20 January, 1959 on Grand Cayman.

    In March 1979, he married Kathleen Bodden. 

    In 1987, he was ordained as a Christian minister and became the full time pastor at Agape. 

    In addition to service on the Health Services Authority board and on the Constitutional Commission, Pastor Al served at the Marine Institute, the National Youth Commission, and participated in strategic planning for both education and health services in Cayman.

    In 2003, he was one of 500 people recognised as a nation-builder on Cayman’s Quincentennial Wall of Hounor.

    Pastor Al served as co-chair
    of the Chamber of Commerce working group on constitutional modernisation in the Cayman
    Islands. In this role, he addressed the United Nations Select Committee of 24 on Decolonisation at the UN Headquarters in New York and also at a regional seminar in St.
    Vincent. In 2009, he traveled to the UK with a delegation to finalise Cayman’s new constitution, which was approved by voters later that year. 

    He was awarded the Certificate and Badge of Honour from the Cayman Islands government. 

    In January 2010, he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of
    Divinity Degree. 

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    4 COMMENTS

    1. I feel such a heavy burden, pressing against my heart at the thought of a great man who has passed away. Words can not express my deepest feelings. Pastor Al Ebanks brings back memories. I remember his first church off Hospital Road, and Triple C School was behind the church. Ms. Pearline and Ms. Wennie use to live right next to the church. They use to been faithful members. Pastor Al was a pioneer of the gospel and a person who you could relate with one-on-one.

      With deep sorrow, my sincerest condelonces goes out to his family and wife, Kathy. Indeed… these words are fitting – WHO MAY ASCIND THE MOUNTAIN OF THE LORD? WHO MAY STAND IN HIS HOLY PLACE? THE ONE WHO HAS CLEAN HANDS AND A PURE HEART.

      Amen

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    2. Pastor Al will be very sadly missed. I will always remember his kindness to the students and teachers of John Gray High School following hurricane Ivan when we spent many happy months teaching at his Church. I actually taught computers, and had over twenty computers in his Church kitchen! Pastor Al was always there for us. He was also very kind and helpful to the John Gray Recyclers and he will always be remembered fondly for his kind and helpful ways! Our condolences go to Sister Cathy and her family and we would like to be remembered to them at this very sad time! Christine and Eric Whitehead

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    3. Our kindest and most sincere condolences to Pastor Al Ebank’s wife, sisters, family and church family. May God sincerely put his arms around you and comfort you in this hour of grief.
      God bless you all.

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    4. It was indeed an honour for me to have shared the ecclesiastical landscape with this servant of God. He was always willing to listen to others and to be a facilitator of peace. He was a great Caymanian whose mission was to seek the will of God for all. May his soul rest in peace and rise in glory. Amen.

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