Police Officers and Their Spouses Grow Together in Jesus Christ

By   •   November 1, 2023

“What are you waiting for?” cold-case detective, speaker, and bestselling author J. Warner Wallace asked. He challenged the crowd of police officers and their spouses to investigate the truth of the Bible for themselves and consider the life-changing power of God to transform their hearts, marriages, and careers.

After two Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) officers recently committed suicide, Patrol Sergeant Joshua Rollins felt called to minister to his department as a chaplain.

“Cops talk to cops,” Rollins explained.

Having served 10 years in law enforcement, Rollins felt equipped to help address the unique needs of his fellow officers and became a chaplain for CMPD.

He and his wife, Brandy, were two of ­­­the nearly 300 people who attended last week’s Law Enforcement Appreciation Retreat (LEAR) at the Billy Graham Training Center at The Cove.

“I want to see how things are done here, and apply that to my home division,” he said, hungry to learn more about how to best point his co-workers to Jesus Christ.

This three-day event hosted by the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team provided a space in the peaceful Blue Ridge Mountains for officers and their spouses to focus on God. Bible-based sessions addressed topics like the stress law enforcement can put on marriages, how to support spouses who serve, and surrendering to the Lord. Several speakers shared their own stories of processing trauma and how Christ helped them through it.

“Knowing the beauty of the Gospel in action in jobs and places that are not easy and not spiritually focused—we know what a difference events like this make,” Brandy said.

Law enforcement officers and their spouses—some coming to North Carolina from as far as Canada and Wisconsin—enjoyed fellowship with those in the same field, sharing many familiar experiences and traumas, and growing together in Jesus Christ.

Recharging Your Battery

Eric and Suzie Treanor got a call about a last-minute opening for the retreat, and the next week they made the five-hour drive from Franklin, Tennessee, to Asheville, North Carolina.

The timing couldn’t have been more perfect, as the couple is seeking God’s direction in a major life change.

Eric, who has served with the Franklin Police Department for over 27 years, is retiring in March.

“I’ve been doing this for over half my life,” he said.

“I wanted Eric to come for camaraderie and support,” Suzie added. “I am excited about [his retirement], but the unknown is also scary.”

At the retreat, couples are encouraged to connect with other couples and hear from speakers who have gone through similar experiences in the workforce, such as cold-case Detective J. Warner Wallace, Oregon State Police Officer Boon Setser, and former police officer with the Racine (Wisconsin) Police Department Chad Stillman.

“It’s good to sharpen your blade, recharge your battery, and to know that you are not the only one [going through things],” Eric said.

Register for the next Law Enforcement Appreciation Retreat in Illinois May 6–8.