While he’s off galavanting about in god knows where (Hawaii, he’s in Hawaii), it seems Prime Minister Scott Morrison‘s Government has been hard at work giving taxpayer-funded handouts to the people who need it most. It’s just that, apparently, their definition of “the people who need it most” is “the members of Scott Morrison’s own already pretty well-off Pentecostal church.”

Last month the Government awarded a grant to Morrison’s own Horizon Church in Sutherland, according to documents published on the Government’s transparent grants website.

Horizon, which also operates as Shirelive, is a Pentecostal megachurch that boasts an impressive and very glitzy facility, featuring a 1,000-seat auditorium. Scott Morrison and his entire family are members of the church, and regularly attend services whenever he’s in town.

In mid-November, the church was awarded $110,000 worth of public money through a Department of Home Affairs initiative known as the Safer Communities Fund.

That money, now available to the church for a period covering November 14th 2019 until September 7th 2021, is expected to fund “the installation of 18 fixed security cameras, 13 security lights, video intercoms to 3 designated areas, 2 security and alarm systems and the employment of a security guard” at the church, according to grant documents that are freely available to the public.

The grant, uncovered on Twitter this morning, is intended to “protect children who are at risk of attack, harassment or violence stemming from racial or religious intolerance.”

Horizon Church is currently and prominently championing the imminent opening of a brand new campus in Dunsborough, in the Margaret River region of Western Australia. That facility is set to open its doors on March 1st next year, according to social media.

The Safer Communities Grant, worth some $31 million overall, is aimed at providing schools, pre-schools, religious institutions and community organisations with funding to “address crime and anti–social behaviour” by “funding crime prevention initiatives that benefit the wider community.”

Where that gets particularly interesting, is when you consider that the primary assessment criteria for the grant, weighted at 50% of the overall assessment, explains that the grants are being judged on the “extent that your project will protect schools and pre-schools, places of religious worship, community organisations and local councils that may be facing security risks associated with racial and/or religious intolerance.”

To that end, do 18 security cameras and a video intercom for a Pentecostal megachurch currently fitting out a recently-acquired property in the Margaret River pass the sniff test as a “benefit to the wider community”?

Apparently, that’s for God to decide.

Image: AAP