Detroit Church That Gives Mushrooms to Its Members Shut Down by Police
A church on Detroit's west side has been shut down for allegedly passing out psychedelic mushrooms to congregation members.
Robert Shumake, who serves as "Shaman Shu" is the pastor of Soul Tribes International Ministries. He tells Detroit's WJBK-TV
that he believes the city of Detroit targeted his church because he shares mushrooms - which he calls sacred plants - with the members of his congregation.
Shumake says he offers the psychedelic plants to congregants to help them cope and to improve their mental health.
"A shaman’s role is to help people through that process," he said. "To help you identify your trauma. Where is that trauma coming from? Is it your trauma, or is it your generational trauma? Many people don’t realize they have ancestral trauma."
Acting Within the Law
Shumake tells the station he helped craft an ordinance that decriminalized the use of mushrooms in the city of Detroit. The measure passed and his church opened its doors in March of this year.
But city officials say that despite the ordinance, psilocybin (commonly known as mushrooms) is considered a controlled substance under state law. The city ordinance does not override state law.
Trying to Help a Broken Community
Shumake says his church is simply trying to help people who live in a broken community.
"You got Percocet, oxycontin. you got fentanyl," he said. "We’re talking about the sacred sacrament. we’re asking for the people," he said. "It’s all about the people. Power to the plant and power to the people. we want to get open."
He tells the station he plans to form a legal team to help him fight the shutdown and reopen the church as soon as possible.