Benny Holmes, pastor of The Church of New Beginnings, Baytown, Texas
Benny Holmes is pastor of The Church of New Beginnings, a full gospel church in Baytown, Texas. Holmes, a gun-toting preacher, recently shot a man who was burglarizing the church. The Washington Times reported:
A gun-owning pastor shot a man who broke into the Church of New Beginning in Baytown, Texas, and then led him through the sinner’s prayer.
Pastor Benny Holmes was sleeping when he heard someone break into his church on Tuesday. Surveillance video and a 911 call both appear to back up his story.
“I commanded him to stop twice, and he didn’t. So fearing for my life, I did what I had to do,” Mr. Holmes told a local ABC affiliate.
“Do you know Jesus? The Lord Jesus?” the pastor asks the suspect on the 911 call, The Blaze reported. “Say, ‘Lord Jesus. Forgive me. I have sinned. I repent. Come inside my heart. Live inside of me. And I won’t do this again. In Jesus’ name.’”
The burglar prayed the sinners prayer and then tried to leave. Holmes, following in the steps of Jesus, told the man, “If you get up I’m gonna shoot you again, OK?”
Here’s a recording of the 911 call:
Last September, Holmes pulled a gun on a grandmother who was stealing packages from his porch. ABC13 reported:
A pistol-packing pastor nabbed a grandmother who police said is responsible for stealing dozens of packages from homeowners’ front porches.
On September 12, Laurie Ferguson, 52, was caught stealing some packages from Benny Holmes’ front porch, according to the Baytown Police Department.
“He was at his wits end,” said Holmes’ wife, Pat. “He was determined in his mind that he would sit here, however long it took, to see if he could find her.”
Pastor Benny Holmes is seen on video bolting through his front door with a gun in hand. He ordered Ferguson to get on the ground. She did.
“She said I’m looking for my dog,” said Holmes. “He said you found your dog. Bow wow,” said Pat Holmes.
When police were dispatched to the home, Benny Holmes was holding Ferguson at gunpoint. Investigators believe that Ferguson is the same woman caught on surveillance video driving a red Ford Fiesta and taking packages from the Holmes’ porch two previous times this year. Two children could be seen taken out of Ferguson’s car. The kids are her grandchildren.
“I learned they had retrieved quite a few packages from her house,” said Holmes.
Police said Ferguson had several stolen items in her home that were taken during similar incidents in the neighborhood. Holmes said Ferguson stole a pastor’s robe that was delivered to her home in June.
Pat Holmes said she has a gift for Ferguson. She specially made a hat with the word “forgiven” that she hopes to give Ferguson one day.
In both instances, the criminal was unarmed. Thanks to Texas gun laws. Holmes will not be charged with a crime. I don’t think for a moment that Holmes feared for his life. Knowing the burglar was unarmed, Holmes could have fired a warning shot or used some other means to cause the man to leave. Instead, he shot the man in the back as he tried to run. What’s next for gunslinger Holmes? Killing someone?
Numerous right-wing news and religious sites have turned Holmes into a hero; a gun-toting, soul-saving, man of God. According to Holmes’ ex-wife, “He loves the Lord, a man of God, cares for his sheep, and certainly protects the property.” Loves the Lord? What would Jesus have done? Where’s the verse that commands Christians to shoot and ask questions later? Would Jesus kill a man over some electronic equipment or hold a woman at gunpoint over a stolen package. I doubt it.
Evidently, this passage of scripture is not in Pastor Holmes’ Bible:
Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. Matthew 5:43-48