Monday, January 8, 2018

Who would Jesus leave out in the cold? Calling out ministries turning away registered humans

[Note, if you have not taken my disaster preparedness survey for registrants and their loved ones, pleasev do so now -- http://esurv.org/online-survey.php?surveyID=MIJKMM_923b5434 . This issue certainly falls into the natural disasters that would cause one to seek shelter.]

Much of the USA has been stuck in the freezing cold for the past couple of weeks. There's still snow on the ground from Christmas at my home in Cincinnati. We are finally going to climb above freezing for the first time in two and a half weeks, so relief is in sight. During these cold weeks, a number of stories came out with smiling shelter directors proudly proclaiming they have shelters open to ANYONE* who needs it. Of course, the asterisk was for those on the registry.

NARSOL members had contacted a number of shelters in the news stories, and while all cited the shelters accepting children and being too close to schools as reasons for turning away registrants, not one shelter gave specifics on alternative housing for registrants. Read their efforts by clicking the link below:

https://narsol.org/2018/01/shelter-discrimination-blurs-separation-of-church-state/

I had a computer crash this week but was able to contact two ministries, one from Alabama (Christ-N-Us) and one from tennessee (MATS, Inc.). Below was their responses.

Christ-N-Us, a ministry from Mobile AL, responded through a FB post after deleting numerous comments from anti-registry activists.

https://www.facebook.com/ChristNUs2/posts/747152562136506

"We do not make the law, but we do have to abide by it. We will give them a hot meal, a hot shower, warm clothes, coats and blankets. We will also find the somewhere they can go. There are numerous other shelters available. They simply cannot reside in our facility, we are a family shelter, a great deal of our clients and children are under safety plans through DHR and the court system. Jesus would not kick them out into the cold and neither do we. We do the very best we can do within the limits of the law we must abide by. Perhaps if more people would get involved something could be done to rectify the situation and open a facility that will allow these individuals more help and resources. God Bless you and Happy New Year!"

In the comments section, Donald Anthony Floyes Jr, who runs a ministry called Joy Unspeakable Ministries, praised the shelter for not taking in registrants, adding, "Don’t apologize for turning away potential threats/predictors. Pastors have to watch over the flock!"


It took a week to get even a vague answer from MATS, Inc. of TN Director Gary Brewster. He didn't understand what I meant by "registered citizens" (even after putting an explanation of the term in parentheses) and it took nearly a week and a couple of emails to receive a response, and didn't exactly help by passing along any useful information.

We have two other shelters they can go to that are merely blocks away. One for males and one for females. Also, we have a shelter down the road that we can drive them to. In addition to this information, we only had one person who fits your description who did not want to go to any of the shelters in the area and we were able to find a home for him.

Thank you for your compassion and hard work for your fellow man. Please discontinue correspondence with MATS. We will continue to be diligent and faithful to do our job here and I'm sure you will do yours there. But I see no reason for further correspondence. 

Dr. Gary Brewster
MATS
"Mats" <directorofmats@gmail.com>

These ministries turning away registered humans are not truly standing up for Christ as far as I am concerned. Christ would not turn a registered person away any more than he turned away murderers, prostitutes, tax collectors, and other ruffians when he walked this earth. But it seems some of these ministries need to be reminded the Scripture that the mission of helping others in need is of the utmost importance to Christ.

James 1: 22-27 - English Standard Version (ESV)
22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing. 26 If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless. 27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.

Matthew 7:21-23 
21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ 23 And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

Matthew 25: 41-46
41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ 44 Then they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’ 45 Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ 46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

Finally, those of you who do not want to listen to my words yet claim to follow Christ, I leave you with what I am doing to your "ministry." I hope others do the same. 

Matthew 10:14-15
 14 And if anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town. 15 Truly, I say to you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town.

Thankfully, there HAVE been programs willing to stand up for their right to minister to those in need. 

Triumph Church in Clanton AL sued under religious freedom laws with help from the ACLU (yes, the same ACLU many Christians deride as the the "Anti-Christian Liberties Union") to run a halfway house for registered persons. The ministry reopened after a long legal battle in the spring of 2017. 

CrossRoads Shelter in RI (a secular program) is also getting help from the ACLU in stopping the state from enforcing a new law limiting the number of beds for registrants to 10% of available bed space. 

I don't want to hear any more excuses from churches. It is not Christian to turn away the "least of these." Get behind me, Satan!

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