Law enforcement officers appreciation dinner set for September 22nd

By Hope Comer - [email protected]

Jeff Struecker

Jeff Struecker

Scott Rawlings, Senior Pastor at Christ Community Church, announced the church is hosting a law enforcement appreciation dinner and speaker on September 22, 2022.

The church is giving back to the law enforcement officers (LEO) not only to show appreciation but tell the community what the Bible says about authority. Rawlings state that police are a minister of God for the purpose of keeping order in the culture.

“It says in (NIV version) Romans 13:4, ‘For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.’”, Scott cited. “It continues saying into verse 5, ‘Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.’”

Sheriff David Thoroughman is grateful for the community he serves at the Scioto County Sheriff’s Department.

“I am very appreciative to live in and serve a community such as Scioto County,” said Sheriff Thoroughman. “It would be difficult to think of a day that someone from our community has not shown me or my deputies how thankful they are for our service. We are grateful for the dinner that Christ’s Community Church is providing in honor and appreciation of law enforcement.”

Matt Rawlings, Lead Pastor at Christ’s Community Church, said they have done this before to honored law enforcement in 1992.

“It was his (Scott’s) idea with everything going on across the country and police especially with police getting a bad wrap with college kids and so forth,” Matt said. “We just wanted to take a night to tell them thank you, feed them (LEO) dinner, raffle off a few things and present to them a speaker they can relate to (Jeff Struecker).”

Struecker is retired from the Army Rangers is now a Baptist minister. In almost 23 years in the Army, Jeff served 17 combat deployments in five different US wars including Black Hawk Down.

“He was a survivor of the Black Hawk down incident in Somalis,” according to Matt. “In fact, he will tell his story that night (September 22). He didn’t go in on a Black Hawk, he was in a Humvee. He drove in and out of the city a dozen times (rescuing the injured) during that firefight seeing it all. It was no man left behind.”

According to his website,, he has many awards and commendations from his military service including the Silver Star for bravery in combat. Struecker holds a PhD, as well as many other earned and honorary degrees. He has taught leadership at every level from undergraduate to PhD. He is an award-winning author with six books in print.

“He (Struecker) was shot at and he turned around and a guy had a RPG rocket launcher, he saw it come right at him and it hit the top of his door and bounce off and exploded,” recalled Matt from one of the three times he has heard Struecker speak.

Struecker will be talking about Black Hawk Down and Faith over Fear. The invitation only event is open to local law enforcement officers and one guest from the Portsmouth Police Department, Scioto Sheriff’s Department, New Boston Police Department and Ohio State Highway Patrol Post 73 in Scioto County along with security from Shawnee State University. Registration is done through your supervisor by September 8th to allow time to plan the meal for everyone. If you are on duty there will be no wait to go dinners available but you must let your supervisor know by the registration deadline.

The event is casual dress. No uniform required to attend. There will be free professional photos taken if you choose to do so with Struecker.

Mike Irwin, Juan Shipley, Wanda Blair (the widow of Officer Hughie Blair) will be greeting people at the door starting at 6 p.m. Dinner will start at 6:30 p.m at Christ’s Community Church located at 2433 25th Street, Portsmouth, Ohio. If anyone would like to make a door prize donation, please contact the church at 740-353-1633.

Jeff Struecker Struecker

By Hope Comer

[email protected]

© 2022 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved

© 2022 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved