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Mike usually fell asleep during my sermons, and that was okay. It was about twenty years ago; I was serving as interim pastor at a small church. I knew Mike, a police officer, worked a graveyard shift Saturday night, and yet he managed to be in the Sunday morning worship service. I tended to preach too long at the time, and Mike may be the only person who really benefited from the long sermons — he got an extended nap time. Mike came to mind recently, when I had the opportunity to meet with Kate Braestrup, a chaplain with the Maine Warden Service and a best selling author.
For the last 25 years, she’s had a connection with law enforcement. Her first husband was a Maine State Trooper who was killed in an on-duty auto accident. Her daughter currently serves in law enforcement. Needless to say, she’s invested in the subject.
It’s always a bit daunting to write about good writers because I wonder if anything I write might be written better by the subject of my writing. (For instance, Kate would no doubt have done a far better job with the previous ungainly sentence.) But I write on, partly because in this time when police officers find themselves in the center of public controversy, I believe the Church needs to consider how we can best minister to these men and women.