PIQUA — The Protect Piqua program with the Piqua Police Department is developing a new chaplaincy council as part of a continuing effort to connect with the local faith community.
The Piqua Police Department has had a chaplain since 2003, and their current chaplain is Pastor Brian Hamilton of Transformed Life Church.
“A chaplain can go out and help a person we refer them to,” Chief of Police Bruce Jamison of the Piqua Police Department said. The chaplain also can act as a spiritual aid for the police officers.
Hamilton also responds with members of the Protect Piqua and the police department when they go out to offer help and recovery options to people addicted to drugs like heroin and other opioids.
The chaplaincy council will not replace the police department’s current chaplain, but it will be expanding that program further.
“This chaplaincy council will get together regularly,” Jamison said. He added later, “It’s part of our Protect program because our Protect program is really about engaging the community.”
The chaplaincy council would be made up of local pastors and religious leaders in the community. They could discuss local issues with the police department that the police department may not be aware of, and vice versa.
The police department could make the chaplaincy council aware of a variety of resources, and one example would be the recent beginning of Celebrate Recovery through Protect Piqua’s Heart program and the Piqua Compassion Network. Celebrate Recovery is a faith-based, 12-step recovery program that meets from 7-8:30 p.m. Thursdays at the Piqua Compassion Network, located at 531 W. Ash St.
“Through the chaplaincy council, we could make the communication open,” Jamison said.
The police department also can ask for help through the chaplaincy council, such as if they know of a juvenile who needs mentoring.
The chaplaincy council also could act as an additional spiritual aid to police officers. An additional spiritual aid may be needed if churches decide to use any police officers in their congregation as possible security during church services, as police officers would have the appropriate training for an emergency situation, but they would be forced to be on alert instead of focusing on spiritual healing.
“We’re on all the time,” Jamison said. “It’s something we have to work through.”
Jamison added that, luckily, “We have a faith community that’s always looking to do something for our police officers … It’s very reassuring.”
In addition to the faith community connecting with the police department, the police department will also be learning about the participating churches and places of worship.
Protect Piqua has already received an amount of interest in the chaplaincy council through their active shooter training event earlier this week at Transformed Life Church. If a church or religious leader would like to participate in the chaplaincy council or has additional questions, Jamison can be contacted at email@example.com.
Reach Sam Wildow at firstname.lastname@example.org