Katrina's flood waters have receded but nonetheless continue to uncover hidden truths about this America. This time, the heart of some black pastors and their apparent love-of-money problem.
After Hurricane Katrina struck, President Bush enlisted a coalition of clergy from across the nation to distribute part of the $110 million in private funds that his father and former president Bill Clinton raised to help victims of the storm.They are all blaming Bishop Jakes? Incredible, the ingratitude of some these people.
But six months later, Bishop T.D. Jakes, one of the ministers selected by Bush, said that not a dime of the $20 million designated for faith organizations along the Gulf Coast has arrived. He blames the fund led by Clinton and former president George H.W. Bush for not coming up with a plan to distribute the money to churches and other faith-based organizations.
"I am annoyed. I am frustrated. I am angry," said Jakes, who is co-chairman of an advisory panel set up to help the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund distribute the $20 million to churches. "We need to focus more on rebuilding our country."
In December, Jakes; former representative William H. Gray III (D-Pa.), the other co-chairman; and the other members of the advisory panel held hearings in New Orleans. More than 2,000 pastors testified about their hardships, and according to one prominent minister, some wondered when they would see any of the money from the Bush-Clinton fund.
"It is really embarrassing," said Bishop Paul Morton, pastor of the 20,000-member Greater St. Stephen Full Gospel Baptist Church. "We had all of these preachers coming together, about 2,000 filled out applications and there is still no money. They are all blaming Bishop Jakes, but he doesn't have the authority over the money. It is not his fault." [source]
Questions for Bishops Jakes and Morton:
1. Where are the multiple thousands of people in the organizations you run? Why arent they supporting fellow "covenant" members?
2. Morton has already personally received 500K from black playwright Tyler Perry. Are you looking to restore your pre-Katrina financial grandeur?
3. Are any of these the ones who vote lock step with the Democrats and despise the President's faith based initiatives? Atlanta's Rev. Timothy McDonald, president of the African American Ministers Leadership Council, which has about 60 ministers in 30 states, argues that Bush’s faith-based initiative is a clear attempt to silence African American churches and to divert them from their traditional role as a "prophetic voice" for social justice. "They are trying to buy the allegiance of the black church," he says. "And that is to the advantage of the Republican Party, because the black church has been a major thorn in their side."
Matthew 6:20,21 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.