Monday, March 28, 2011

Church suspends minister for defying order
to close homeless shelter

A church has suspended its minister 15 months after he defied orders to close a homeless shelter.

Rev. Hedley Fihaki from the Cairns Emmanuel Uniting Church in Australia has been suspended for three months.

But members from his congregation called the suspension a “bully move” by the Brisbane head office who disciplined him for challenging directives and helping the homeless by delaying the eviction.

In December 2009, the church was told to eject the homeless from the Good Samaritan Ministry Centre due to fire safety and building compliance concerns. Just weeks before Christmas, the 26 people staying at the shelter faced being left with nowhere to go.

Dr. Fihaki defied the deadlines for eviction until new accommodation was found at a motel and a promise made for negotiations to reopen the facility.

But the old shelter remains vacant and now the minister of more than five years is being punished for his stand.

Read the Cairns Post report here.

Thanks to @homelesslaw for the link.


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