Church urged to take a stand during National Police Week

    Candlelight vigil for deceased police officers
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund Candlelight vigil for police officers who died in May 2021. |

As law enforcement officers gathered in our nation’s capital to mark National Police Week, some behind the badge warn of a growing tide of anti-police sentiment across the United States.

After two years of virtual events due to the COVID-19 pandemic, National Police Week has revenue to experience in-person events May 11-17 in Washington, D.C., to recognize those who serve and those who have lost their lives in the line of duty.

The National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum held ceremonies to honor fallen officers whose names were recently added to the memorial, including the event’s 34th annual candlelight vigil last Friday.

This year, 619 names have been added to the memorial – 472 of whom were killed in the line of duty in 2021, including 319 officers who died of COVID-19. The others have lost their lives in previous years.

Rebecca Lynn, the author of Proud Wife of the Police: 90 Devotions for the Women Behind the Badge and a police officer’s wife of 15 years, told the Christian Post that the memorial is an opportunity for families to see the lives and service of their loved ones celebrated.

“We can remember those officers that we have lost, and really thank their family members and support those family members as well, to let them know that the legacy of their loved one will not be forgotten.” , said Lynn.

The event returns to the nation’s capital after a difficult two-year period in which Americans’ attitudes towards law enforcement officers changed in the wake of the pandemic and the rise of Black Lives Matter. Matter and other organizations calling on police departments to lose funding for what they describe as a “epidemicof police shootings.

Lynn says that since 2020 — and particularly following the police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota — media headlines have been a source of stress and tension for officers.

“As people go on with their lives, trying to get through the pandemic…what 2020 has brought with protests and riots, people kind of think it’s over, but it’s not over,” a- she declared. “Law enforcement officers, their families and their departments are still dealing with the backlash of what we have seen.”

It’s a reality that was recently addressed in comments by FBI Director Christopher Wray, in which he warned of a “phenomenon” of violence against the police.

Wray told ’60 Minutes’ that the nearly 60% increase in police killings – including 73 officers murdered in 2021 – “is one of the biggest phenomena that I think doesn’t appeal enough to people.” ‘Warning”.

Adam Davis, former law enforcement agent, FBI-trained hostage negotiator and co-author of Prayers and Pledges for First Responders, told the Christian Post that it was time for Christians to lead the way in civic defense of law enforcement. He calls on those who support the police to “be louder than the voice of those who oppose and hate us”.

“We need the Church to stand up and not be cowards. We need the Church to be the voice of the righteous to the good,” he said, quoting Revelation 21:8.

“We can no longer sit on the sidelines. We must be one voice.

Davis warned that the anti-police narrative coming from the mainstream media is part of a larger effort to discredit local law enforcement.

“We have to face reality here. … There are organizations and groups that have a political agenda, and to advance their agenda, they need cops on the sidelines,” Davis said. “It’s the sad reality, but it’s a fact.

“They won’t stop chasing the cops. They’re going to come after your families, they’re going to attack your families, and guess who’s gonna be there when there’s a fraction of law enforcement when evil comes to your door?

The narrative is also pushing more law enforcement officers to consider changing careers altogether, according to Lynn.

“Honestly, the past two years have been incredibly difficult for law enforcement and their families,” she said. “We have seen law enforcement officers choose to leave the profession because of this scrutiny. And what really happened is that people will just watch a headline from a media [outlet] and just regurgitating a title, instead of actually learning facts about certain law enforcement situations.”

“What’s happened is law enforcement as a whole has just been dehumanized, and people don’t really see officers as real human beings anymore. They don’t see them as mothers, fathers, coaches, your neighbors.

Davis argues that the effort to dehumanize officers began long before COVID-19 and 2020.

“It started in the movies, where people cheered on the bad guy as they attacked the cops, or the cop was corrupt or whatever. It’s something that’s been going on for a long time,” he said.

“This is a reminder that every man and woman who puts on a uniform, who puts on a badge and a duty belt, every man and woman you see who may have arrested you, gives you a warning or a ticket or works a wreck in response to your worst day, they are human beings, they deserve grace, they deserve mercy.

Jerry B. Hatch