Over the past decade, cities around the country have established clergy response teams, comprised of pastors, priests and other religious leaders from all religious denominations, to provide aid, counseling and assistance to victims of crime and lately of natural disasters. Now a report suggests that these clergy response teams may be used to help put down civil unrest and enforce martial law.
Clergy response teams are nothing new. Though little information is available on the Internet, these teams have existed in various cities around the country since at least the 1990s. Their original purpose was to provide counseling for victims of violent crime and other traumatic events. One of the first such teams in Pacoima, Calif., is credited (PDF) with helping to reduce illegal gang activity in that area.
In Greeley, Colo., in 2002, the clergy response team helped officials deal with hate crimes against Muslim and Sikh residents and reduce community tensions. The program was set to expand to Grand Junction and Glenwood Springs by 2003, according to a 2002 U.S. Department of Justice report (PDF).
Some other clergy response teams are known to operate in Rochester, N.Y., (PDF) and Washington, D.C. (PDF) These were funded through Department of Justice Community Oriented Policing Services Value Based Initiative grants to “respond to the scene of traumatic incidents and provide services to victims, witnesses, and their families.”
In Washington, the East of the River Clergy Police Community Partnership “sponsors teams of clergy and other faith-based individuals that reach out to the families, next of kin and other secondary victims of violent crimes and homicide,” according to a statement on its Web site. “Its purpose is to provide aid, counseling and assistance to victims, witnesses and their families and to intervene in the occurrence of retaliation.”
After Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Christ in Action, a non-profit group of clergy from around the country, assisted in disaster relief by providing meals and home reconstruction for victims displaced by the hurricane. According to the White House’s report on Hurricane Katrina, “Dr. Denny Nissley, the Director of Christ in Action, is organizing a Coalition of Faith-Based First Responders from around the Nation to be prepared for the next major disaster. This Coalition will perform disaster relief training for volunteers and will maintain a current roster of thousands of volunteers who can be quickly called upon to provide support during the next major disaster.”
Now comes a TV news report from Louisiana of what some other of those faith-based first responders were doing during Katrina: helping the government take away victims’ guns.
Could martial law ever become a reality in America? Some fear any nuclear, biological or chemical attack on U.S. soil might trigger just that. KSLA News 12 has discovered that the clergy would help the government with potentially their biggest problem: Us. . . .
If martial law were enacted here at home, like depicted in the movie “The Siege”, easing public fears and quelling dissent would be critical. And that’s exactly what the ‘Clergy Response Team’ helped accomplish in the wake of Katrina.
Dr. Durell Tuberville serves as chaplain for the Shreveport Fire Department and the Caddo Sheriff’s Office. Tuberville said of the clergy team’s mission, “the primary thing that we say to anybody is, ‘let’s cooperate and get this thing over with and then we’ll settle the differences once the crisis is over.'” — KSLA-TV
Watch the full report from KSLA-TV:
And when they aren’t taking them outright, they’re buying them. That clergy response team in Rochester completed a gun buyback program August 4, taking 102 guns from citizens and giving them $50 gift cards for Wegmans Food Markets in exchange.
At one point, the officers ran out of cards and Police Chief David Moore had to rush to a store to get more, said the Rev. Deloris Simpson, a member of the Clergy Response Team.
“Thank God for Wegmans,” said Simpson. “They’ve given people the incentive to say ‘enough is enough.’ One lady turned in four guns and she didn’t even want a certificate. She just wanted them out of her house.”
The police collected 29 long guns, 69 handguns and four air guns. Officer Deidre Taccone said the department was just as pleased to get the air guns because they’re also commonly used in crimes. — Rochester Democrat & Chronicle
Aside from taking away people’s guns so they can’t defend themselves from the looting and crime which invariably follows such a disaster, then providing those same victims with “counseling,” the clergy response teams will also have an important role to play if martial law is ever declared. And one of the scenarios where that might happen is a bird flu pandemic.
In Bellefontaine, Ohio, last year, Logan County Emergency Management Agency officials held training sessions with local clergy advising them how to use selected Bible passages to provide counseling during crisis situations. Some of the training focused specifically on the bird flu pandemic, according to documents (PDF) obtained by a pastor who attended the training and forwarded to Alex Jones’ prisonplanet.com Web site. “Pastor Revere” told Jones (MP3) that “we get the picture that we’re going to be standing at the end of some farmer’s lane while he’s standing there with his double barrel, saying we have to confiscate your cows, your chickens, your firearms.”
One of those passages, Pastor Revere said, was Romans 13.
For those who are ignorant of Romans 13, let me address the issue bluntly: According to Romans 13, every citizen is only bound to obey his or her governing official to the degree that the governing official does not violate the duty of the citizen to obey the “higher powers” which, for Americans, are God and the U.S. Constitution. In other words, no Christian can be ordered to disobey God, and no American citizen can be ordered to disobey the U.S. Constitution. Properly understood, Romans 13 teaches that each and every governing official (including the President of the United States and all those under him) must submit to the U.S. Constitution.
Article VI, Paragraph 3 of the U.S. Constitution states, “The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution.”
So, what does the Constitution say regarding the disarmament of American citizens? The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution could not be clearer: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
Did you get that? “[T]he right of the people to keep and bear Arms, SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.” [Emphasis added]
Therefore, any attempt to disarm the American people must be viewed as an act of tyranny and must be resisted.
The right to keep and bear arms is rooted deep in American history. I remind readers that it was the attempted gun confiscation of the colonists’ arms, which had been cached at Concord, Massachusetts, that directly precipitated the beginning of America’s fight for independence. — Chuck Baldwin Live
I would personally like to remind my Christian readers of 1 Samuel 8, in which God grants Israel their first of many earthly kings, not because men should have earthly kings to rule over them, but as punishment for rejecting Him. Just something to think about. Those who are right with God need no earthly king.
And since there are elections coming up, guess who is all for this? These Sam Brownback supporters. Yet another reason to vote for Ron Paul.
In any event, during the next natural disaster, terrorist attack, or pandemic, expect to see these clergy response teams out and about, providing counseling to people who need it, and possibly trying to take guns away from those who don’t.