2016 UPDATE: CUT-PRICE PRAYER-COPS NOW ON BEAT U.K. WIDE
Barmy Gloucestershire police commissioner lets Sectarians loose on the Cotswolds
“”We believe consistent homoerotic sexual activity without repentance to be inconsistent with membership of the Association.
The Christian Police Association (CPA) requires that its members accept Biblical inerrancy and have a strong interest in proselytizing to colleagues and members of the public.
The CPA, despite appearances, is no mere club for Christians within the police. They believe that prayer reduces local crime rates, and they also run an initiative called Coact,
which aims to "Build bridges between the Police and the local Christian
faith community." The possibility that this might also burn bridges
between the police and non-Christians appears not to have occurred to
As well as the problem of multiple religions and sects, the reality is that only a minority of citizens regularly attend religious services. As well as the problems of alienating non-believers and followers of different religions, providing money to a demonstrably homophobic and divisive organisation seems as wise as supporting a litter collecting initiative run by white supremacists.
Above information on the CPA from the excellent RationalWiki website here:
N.B. There are several similar Christian Police Groups like
CPA who have been allowed to mix sectarian law with theological writ
for years such as:
who, instead of serving ratepayers and the public are instead 'Serving Jesus in the Police Service'.
and many others.....
We remind readers that in 2016 the attendance at Anglican
Churches fell for the first time below one million souls. One
million out of 64 million. Why has Surl given these people carte blanche
funny hats go walkabout
in a British town centre
Everyone knows the dangerous excesses of vigilantism. From the racist killings of the KKK through the execution of doctors by anti-abortionists to the burning to death of paedophiles in their homes by an incensed rabble, the extremes of vigilantism are so well attested (See the History of Vigilantism Here) that for decades the police have shunned self-styled law-and-order groups as dangerous complications to proper policing. But not any more it would seem.
In February 2010 the Home Office
gave ten thousand pounds (£10,000.00) of taxpayers' money to a group of fundamentalist
Christians to set up Prayer Police in inner-city areas.
Critics say that their self-styled job will be to
infiltrate community policing, identify people prime for conversion and cure their
criminal tendencies by converting them to Christianity.
By blurring the distinction between policing and prosleytising, fundamentalists within the police force will take unfair advantage. The full ramifications of a possible take-over of the British Police force by Christian Mullahs is startling. The usual irrational fundie complaints are part of it, including coming down hard on people having a good time at Halloween. Like this:
Insp Bartlett, who has 23 years' experience, is "convinced" that faith work has had a positive impact on policing in Barnstaple, Devon. The 44-year-old Christian arranges prayer meetings where locals are encouraged to pray in a bid to cut crime. He claims his prayers have been answered "on a number of occasions".
Two Years On, They're Still Going Strong for God
The officer, who is part of the leadership team of the local Christian Policing Association (CPOA), said: "For the past six years or so, I have reported to quarterly meetings of Christians from different churches in Barnstaple who want to pray for local policing issues. "I have seen a number of specific answers to their prayers like the unprecedented Halloween night in the town when the police did not have to attend a single incident of disorder. [source]
That's because there is no evidence of disorder attached to Halloween! It's the equivalent of saying that there's an increase of criminal activity during the Hindus Diwali celebrations - a pejorative and biased sectarian accusation which the Christian Police Officers Association would not DARE to make for fear of it being seen as a racist remark.
Already the Prayer Police in Barnstaple are following their own agenda against the pagan celebration of Halloween. They are inferring that Trick or Treat causes vandalism and crime because what they really want is to ban Halloween, a festival which most of the population support and enjoy.
The SAFF and other free-speech organisations have proved, despite thousands of claims to the contrary by Christian fundamentalists, that Halloween does NOT have a higher incidence of crime than any other day in the year. Statistically speaking far less breaches in the law occur at Halloween than for example, Christmas Day, when more people are partying. One would have thought that serving policemen would know their own crime statistics. [see here for more fundie nonsense about Halloween]
Yes folks, this revolution in Praying Policemen is just a smokescreen for the same old fundamentalist campaigns against personal choice and self-determination.
This debate is not about whether prayer works or not.
It is about the worry concerning a large cadre (circa 2000 members - source UK Christian Handbook)
of Christian policemen and women who may be at risk of putting their religious
beliefs before their criminology training. Will Justice suffer in the process?
Although promulgated by fundamentalist activists as a valid route to bringing communities together, critics say that Prayer Police are only pertinent to the relatively minor christian evangelical section of our society and that their narrow views will actually cause social conflict, not heal it.
How long will it be before Prayer Police stop drunks in the street and offer them the choice of going to the cop-shop or being let-off if they join in with a prayer to save their souls?
Prayer Policing should be shunned by any decent government as sectarianism of the worst order. Some observers believe it's effect can only be to rend our multi-cultural society from top to bottom by factionalising and provoking Moslems, Hindus, Jews, Sikhs, Buddhists, Pagans and many other beliefs with the tacit insult that only Christianity has the moral keys to a peaceful, crimeless society.
History testifies to the appalling record of suppression, oppression and injustice meted out by Christian fundamentalists in the past, even to their own kind. And for goodness sake, just WHAT is going to happen if these Protestant fundamentalist activists start Prayer Police in Northern Ireland which has always been a powder keg of sectarian conflict!
To find out just how awful some pious Christians can be you should read our report Black Museum III , which uncovered a hidden network of an estimated forty thousand (40,000!) abusing Priests and clergymen ensconsed within the Christian religion who have been physically and sexually abusing small children in the most horrendous ways for decades - whilst praying daily for their souls of course.
I wonder if the The Christian Police Officers Association (CPOA) have prayed for child-abusing priests to be caught? Do they pray for the many Christian preachers who have been convicted of defrauding their churches? Do they pray for the West African Christian missionaries who torture and even kill children during exorcism ceremonies? Perhaps; but it was the SAFF which highlighted these thousands of Christian Crimes and brought them to the attention of the authorities- not with prayer, but through sheer dint of hard work and factual investigation!
As usual the terminally fatuous British Media think that Prayer Policing is a tongue-in-cheek
story and print the ludicrous claims of these fundamentalist policemen as though
they are fact. The Prayer Police say that their activities actually
causes the Christian god to intercede and bring criminals to justice - and nobody bats an eyelid!
I wonder if any of these reporters would like to ask the victims of crime and the relatives of ordinary folk who have been violently murdered for trivial reasons, if god exists; and whether he/she/it is interested in justice? If this omniscient being seems unable to stop evil happening in the first place how can he/she/it be expected to respond to the whispered fancies of prayer afterwards?
Instead of throwing their hands up in disgust and lamenting the disappearance of proper policing whilst demanding answers from our politicians, British journalists allow fundamentalist nosey-parkers to create conflict again and again. Even though there is not a shred of evidence to prove the beliefs of members of the CPOA that crime will disappear if enough people pray against it.
The dumbed-down British media (including, sadly, the self-congratulatory 'broadsheets') did not to my knowledge question any Chief Constable about the advisability of authorising groups of fundamentalist policemen to mix up a private campaign of religous crusading, with official police strategy on local communities.
These journalists did not, apparently, get in touch with any professors of Criminology to ask what their view was about prayer being efficient in bringing criminals to justice; nor did they ask whether it had been scientifically proven. No, instead they print ridiculous statements like the following from a Praying Policeman:
"In 2007, I asked the group to pray for the local detection rate, particularly in the Barnstaple sector, which was at about 26 per cent of total crime and one of the poorest in the force area and meant that justice, in too many cases, was not being done. "Every quarter since that time, there has been an increase in that figure, despite reductions in the overall crime rate to the point that Barnstaple currently has a detection rate of just over 40 per cent of total crime, which is one of the highest in the country.
Once again the SAFF has shown how important our research is in identifying fundamentalist gambits. Our ability to highlight the real agenda behind the stories which the British Media print is legendary.
Did no one remember that Don Axell, the leader of Christian Police Officers Association is religiously opposed to homosexuality and joined in a campaign against the Gay Police Association when they claimed Christian belief put them at risk?
Britain's "Gay Police Association" (GPA) is under investigation by Scotland Yard for possibly committing a "faith crime" when it ran a newspaper advertisement claiming that Christianity was the cause of a jump in violence against homosexuals.
Several months ago, a homosexual policeman applied to join the "Christian Police Association" (CPOA) and was told that to do so, he would have to become celibate.
The CPOA sent the applicant its "position paper" on homosexuality, which states:
"We believe consistent homoerotic sexual activity without repentance to be inconsistent with membership of the Association."
The unnamed gay officer then contacted the GPA, which referred the matter to the police federation. This conflict between factions within the British Police force has still not been resolved and looks set to fester no matter how prayerful the Prayer Police are! [source]
Do British Police forces discriminate against Gay policemen? Then why are they giving funding and influence to a group that apparently does - against all the tenets of both the government and the law it would seem?
Does this mean that Praying Policemen are noting and watching the activities of Gays in their local community on the suspicion that they are likely to be committing crimes .....against children,...against god? And how many of them will have access, through their police position, to confidential records and criminal intelligence about people who happen to be Gay? Will the Prayer Police resist the temptation to coerce Gay people away from homosexuality by trying to convert them to 'God's will'. And what safeguards have been put into place to stop any confidential information being shared with non-police sectarian helpers in the Prayer Patrols?
Many bible-thumpers believe that the Jehovah's Witnesses have a 'counterfeit' belief and campaign to save people from what they see as a 'cult'. Will the Prayer Police see them as a 'danger' to society as well? Will JWs come under increased surveillance? They key is whether Prayer Police can distinguish and separate their private beliefs from their official duty. If they put fanatical religious precepts first, the Police Forces do not appear to have guidelines to cope with this possible abuse of their system by religious activists who work within it.
What does 'liaising with the police' actually amount to? Will it entail victimising families who bring their children up in a way different to that which the Christian bible demands? Because that's exactly what happened in British policing with the Satanic Ritual Abuse Myth in the 1990s.
So who are these self-righteous Cult Cops who have persuaded the gullible British Government and the Association of Chief Police Officers into not only allowing them to take to the streets with the authority of the police behind them, but to give them ten thousand pounds (£10.000.00) of taxpayers money to pursue their religious convictions?
Meet Don Axell. Don is the head of the Christian Police Officers Association. He also volunteers for the Point Man International Ministries. PMIM is a USA Protestant Christian fundamentalist missionary outreach founded by Bill Landreth, a Vietnam veteran in 1984. Landreth targeted the "spiritual" aspects of veterans who suffered from Post Traumatic Stress disorder maintaining that fundamentalist Christianity was the best cure for it.
Some of the work done in the last few years with the police by CPOA and other sectarian groups has centred on the idea that policeman are so impressionable and sensitive as to be traumatised by their day-to-day work and so require Christian counselling to cope. This apparently is a development of the techniques Landreth used to missionise to Vietnam veterans. Bearing in mind the present climate of Victimhood police forces could of course not be seen to be resisting such help for fear of being blamed for adding to the stress (real or imagined) of their employees.
This has enabled fundamentalist councillors to gain influence out of all proportion to their size or the validity of their ideas. But Don Axell himself seems to be on the crest of a wave and has ambitions far beyond UK policing.
Don Axell, travelled to Africa in 2009 under the auspices of the SELSDON BAPTIST CHURCH GLOBAL MISSION.
His intention was to indoctrinate the police force in Nigeria with his ideas on religious policing. Note well that although this was a completely private trip related to his own sectarian beliefs and was not official, Axell was riding high on the authority his influence with the U.K. Police had given him which apparently qualifed him to teach thousands of students at the Nigerian Police academy.
Axell wrote of his trip..
"I had never been to Africa before, but on August 9th I left Heathrow for Lagos not knowing quite what to expect. I was working with the Pointman Leadership Institute and our mission was to speak to several thousand Police recruits and their trainers about a type of ethical leadership that combines modern teaching with biblical principles and provides a moral compass that is both time-tested and it works. In 2 weeks we visited 4 different training centres and spoke to 2,600 people including the Deputy Inspector General of Police."
Here is retired Met Cop and CPOA supremo Don Axell indoctrinating Nigerian policeman about 'What Followers of Jesus Believe' The last bullet point in his presentation to help them catch criminals is that Jesus's resurrection is imminent.
Now just in case my readers cannot fathom fundie-speak the words ' ethical leadership that combines modern teaching with biblical principles' means 'THE WORD OF GOD'. For example, the bible outlaws homosexuality and in this context it is interesting to note that there are plentiful examples of self-righteous Nigerian Christians beating up and even killing homosexuals because they feel they are an abomination to god. It is THIS aspect which the Gay Police Association (GPA) was trying to highlight in its campaign which got them into hot water with the Met and about which Don Axel reportedly said:
"They (the GPA) published a vitriolic article in Police Review magazine about faith-based homophobia,"
Axcell also used information from the magazine article to criticize the GPA's allegation that religion is a motivator of homophobia.
"They say their helpline dealt with 14 cases of faith-based homophobia last year -- but not all of that was Christian," he said. Also, the existence of "14 cases is minuscule if you consider the thousands of police officers in Britain,". [Source]
But the facts show that THERE IS an indefensible world-wide persecution of Gay
men and women by Christians, particularly in third world countries where Baptist or Pentecostal
sects of Christianity hold sway. The GPA maintain that there is also a tacit victimisation of
Gays by fundamentalist Christians in the U.K. Yet in the quote above we find Axcell
trying to assure the British public that there is no extreme anti-gay activity in the U.K.
whilst also visiting Nigeria and indoctrinating their police force with the
idea that the bible is never wrong and it is against god's laws to be gay!
Of course the definition of a fundamentalist is someone who believes that the Bible is the exact Word of God and homosexuality IS outlawed in the Bible so Gays will always be a target for conversion. However if they arm themselves with the SAFF's Bible Basher Defence System here, they can challenge this patronising idea head-on and see how the fundamentalists like having the tables turned.
Gay Couple Slaughtered by ChristiansChristian fundamentalists Matthew Williams and his brother, Tyler, murdered a gay couple, Gary Matson and Winfield Mowder, in their home near Sacramento, California. Speaking to his mother from the Shasta County jail, Matthew explained his actions in this way: "I had to obey God's law rather than man's law," he said. "I didn't want to do this. I felt I was supposed to. I have followed a higher law... I just plan to defend myself from the Scriptures." [source]
I repeat. Prayer Policing is not about clear-up rates. It is about CONVERSION rates and the British Police Force seems to be enabling them to do it. The big question is; how much of this fundamentalist nonsense is percolating through into every-day British policing?
The Scarman Inquiry castigated the police for its 'institutional racism' do we really need another public enquiry to alert them to the fact that sectarians are trying to hijack the moral direction of the police force? .
Just think back to the Satanic Ritual Abuse Myth of the 1990s and how much police time and resources they wasted on a wild-goose chase which was caused directly by lies and exaggerations promoted by Christian fundamentalists. The scare actually began with Cult Cops in The U.S.A ! What a good job we here at the SAFF have such long memories, otherwise you out there would just be putty in their hands. The SAFF was the first group to point the finger at fundamentalism as the cause of the hysteria. The SAFF was the first group to repudiate the idea that Satanic Ritual Abuse existed. We lead where others follow - and this is how it happened:.
In the 1980s a handful of cops , who were also Christian activists, began the Cult
Crime Impact Network in the U.S. In their spare time and completely independent of their
professional responsibilities, (often in conflict with their superiors)
they built up a network of thousands of other Christian
activists (cops, ex-cops, therapists; in fact most anyone who was already sold on
the dangers of Satan).
They began swapping and working-up biased untested information between themselves, holding workshops and giving presentations about so-called Cult Crime to local authorities, social workers, therapists and other police forces.
This included mailing out DIY detective kits to catch Satanists which included barmy lists of symptoms, supposed occult calendars (there was one for every day of the year so any event could be allocated!), dictionaries of occult symbols and many other ridiculous devices which were sold to people within and without the network, whether or not they had any law enforcement training or position.
CCIN played a major part in promoting and exacerbating the Satanic Ritual Abuse Myth in the UK and also worked with British fundamentalists to start the poison off here.
Indeed we have detailed elsewhere on this site how the CCIN worked with the Reachout Trust, the Christian fundamentalist trouble-makers who were most instrumental in promoting that evil myth in the UK.
When the SRAM reached its zenith of belief in Britain CCIN re-imported their own disinformation back from England to America in 'laundered' form to counter intense criticism of the scare they had helped start there and which was then turning on them!
As the terrible effects of the actions of these fundamentalist troublemakers became known, some of the celebrated Cult Cops in their midst broke ranks. Sandi Gallant and Randy Emon, had a revelation and realised it had all been untrue. They repudiated everything that they had said before (see alongside) and admitted that they had been utterly wrong to do it. See more background here.
If you are following the trail so far you might be able to spot a similar bag of tricks today with the to-ing and fro-ing of irrational allegations from country to country. In 2009 a British Cult Cop goes to Nigeria to unearth evil and show Nigerian policemen how to deal with it. Back in 2002 Kobus Jonker a white South African fundamentalist Cult-Cop who had made himself an expert in so-called Satanic Ritual Abuse by collating similar rubbish to that put out by CCIN began hunting down crimes in South Africa which had any remote connection to youth culture, heavy metal bands, and the New Age. Jonkers then travelled to Britain to feed his 'discoveries' into the cadre of SRA believers which still exist in the U.K. Social Work system. He also offered his 'evidence' of Satanic practices in West Africa to the Met crew investigating the Thames Torso case (see here)
Of course if you weren't keeping an eye on all this you would probably now look as perplexed as the various Chief of police in the U.K. who have glibly accepted the idea of Prayer Police at face value.
This is a particularly scathing criticism because only a few year ago Labour banned police membership of the Freemasons on the basis that they were a secret society with a hidden agenda. This caused a witch-hunt in the police to rout out any policemen who were Freemasons. Yet of course, when a similar network of Christian fundamentalists intent on promoting their own agenda hoves into view it is accepted without murmur!
The SAFF has been keeping an eye on the growth of interference in police work by the
fundamentalist right for some years and the uncritical publicity surrounding Praying Police is
the jewel in the crown of fundamentalist attempts to regain power in the community.
But the idea of Prayer Police in Britain is not new, it has been steadily worked upon.
It began in 2002 when fundamentalist police and local churches organised a group
called IMPACT in the Merseyside area.
They commenced a prayer scheme for 'combatting crime'.
Now they claim that over 100 churches in that area are praying regularly for the police
and the crime situation and hold an annual Prayer Day for Police Officers.
It doesn't say whether they also pray for Moslem, or Hindu, or Atheist Police Officers nor whether they want to be prayed over, but the copper organising it, Dave Riley, actually has the nerve to infer that the power of prayer has reduced the crime rate across Liverpool by 45%. It makes one wonder whether Liverpudlians still need to pay for a police force at all and what their bobbies are doing all day now!
This dovetails nicely into the work of the Street Pastors.
Les Isaacs, the founder of the Street Pastors movement, now has volunteer Christians patroling more than 70 cities across the country 'helping drunken revellers and diffusing gang tensions'. He says church groups already play a strong role in tackling antisocial behaviour.Can we remind these interferring busy-bodies that it is not the job of Christian vigilantes to tackle anti-social behaviour, that is the job of the police. The dangerous knock-on effects of private vigilante networks of this kind can easily be seen in the U.S. where they have actually provoked crime, not cured it. That should be a warning to all.
Randy Emon's Public Contrition Below
I am personally convinced I helped create the hysteria that put Paul Ingram
in jail. In 1986 I participated in a video called AMERICA'S BEST KEPT
SECRET in which Mike Warnke also appeared. Because I was a cop and also a
Christian I believed other Christians who told horrific satanic stories would
certainly not fabricate their accounts.
'The more I pray, the More coincidences I seem to see'
Of course it is permissible for Don Axel and his fundamentalist friends to attempt to portray their beliefs in the best light. We are all for free speech and an open debate on these issues and this article is part of that discussion. What we cannot condone are surreptitious campaigns by a fifth column of religious activists which might take-in ill-informed people (nominal Christians and non-Christians) without them realising that the intentions of those praying may not be in line with their own desires or beliefs.
Call us suspicious if you must but after 20 years following these extraordinary carry-ons, we are always amazed how some faceless entity in government acquiesces to ideas which most people find offensive and unnecessary....
Once they get their feet under the table could self-styled Prayer Vigilantes get access to confidential information and pass it on, perhaps accidentally, to those who might feel justified in taking the law into their own hands?
These are questions that need answering but as usual in 21st Century Goofy Britain, a shed-load of innocents will no doubt have to suffer before the politicians and local authorities bother to take action to curb the self-righteous antics of busy-bodies who seek any opportunity to offer salvation to other people whether they ask for it or not.
When that missionaryism is cloaked in the authority of the police and cannot be distinguished from it, ordinary people are put at a disadvantage and it becomes dangerously insidious.
John Freedom, Mortlake, February 2010.
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