It’s amazing what sort of things cause an uproar in our world today. The latest firestorm of debate in our nearby city of Winnipeg? Their new chief of police is advocating the use of prayer to help address the city’s crime problem!
Read the following excerpt from CBC News:
Acting police Chief Devon Clunis says he would like Winnipeggers of all faiths to pray for a better and safer city, as he believes people often find inspiration in prayer to take action and help one another.
“I think if we have a community that’s consistently praying for one another, hopefully we’ll now see the physical reduction of crime and violence in our city,” Clunis, who is a Christian, told CBC News in an interview.
“If you’re praying for your neighbour, I don’t think you’ll be out there hating your neighbour or fighting with your neighbour,” he added.
“If you are praying for your neighbour, you’ll say, ‘OK, I’m praying, but how can I practically do something to impact my neighbour’s well-being?'”
As a Christian, obviously this sounds like a great idea to me, and yet, as usual, people are objecting to this idea. CBC News writes:
Arthur Schafer, an ethicist with the University of Manitoba, said Clunis should not speak so openly about his religious views while he is holding public office. “No one chose him to be police of our souls,” Schafer said. “I think it’s entirely inappropriate for a chief of police, in his role as chief of police, to be advocating prayer either to his colleagues on the police force or to the general public.” Schafer said there are many people in Winnipeg who don’t hold any particular religious beliefs, and those individuals may take offence to Clunis’s views.
Tolerance is a funny and strange idea that’s being tossed around in the world today. Ironically, we are told to be tolerant of everyone and everything… except for things relating to God, faith or Christianity. Does anyone else see a problem with this? Why are we (faith-based people) required to respect Schafer’s right to disbelief, and he doesn’t have to respect the fact that we do have faith? Ridiculous! I think it’s great that Police Chief Clunis is being bold and vocal about his personal faith, and I commend him for it!
I was encouraged as I viewed the results to a poll on the bottom of CBC News website’s article: “What do you think of the incoming police chief’s prayer approach to crime?” Here are the current results:
I encourage you to visit CBC News and add your vote to the poll!
How can we as the faith community respond to this situation? The Bible says, “Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.” (1 Tim. 2:1-2). Let us pray for all of our leaders – federal, provincial, and municipal, and also especially for our police force, and our newly elected police chief Devon Clunis. Amen!