Security and the Church

This is a discussion on Security and the Church within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; A small group here in our church in the Dallas area has formed a very "informal"...in the fact church leadership knows and approves but not ...

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Thread: Security and the Church

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array Ridgeline's Avatar
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    Security and the Church

    A small group here in our church in the Dallas area has formed a very "informal"...in the fact church leadership knows and approves but not formally sanctioned by the church, "covert"...in the sence that we do not advertise or make a big deal of the fact we carry, and watch for potential problems. This security group is made up of all CHL carriers, some RO's & SO's and two are licensed state instructors in both CHL and tactical and defensive training. We train together often, and work thru scenarios that could happen, as well as forward thinking of where our weak points may be.

    Another pastor friend from out of state has called me and asked what they should consider when moving forward to protect their church. I can only speak for us. I know that there are others who have traveled this path too, we would love to hear from you and know your steps, strategies and plan. Thanks so much for your insight.

    Remember - "Eternity is too long to be wrong!"
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    Senior Member Array ridurall's Avatar
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    We have a group of guys that pull a rotating security detail. There are enough so that it only comes around once every 2 months. While having a CCW is not required many of us do. We also carry weather we are pulling security or not. We don't advertise but know each other and pull it two guys at a time. There are some people that have made themselves unwelcome at our church (usually it's a problem with inappropriate conduct around children) and we have their pictures so we recognize them and are to call the police and make sure they leave the property. It's not a real formal thing and we also have pagers that are carried by those on duty.
    Life member NRA since 1983
    I carry a Kimber Ultra Carry II in a Crossbreed SuperTuck. My wife carries a Walther PPS .40 w/Crossbreed holster.

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    Member Array gunnerdd2's Avatar
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    In April we will be moving into our new church and are in the process of assembling a security team. so far just five of us , all chp's . Hope we can get some more volunteers. So far we avent had any problem, just want to be ready....

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    Our Senior Pastor has asked a couple of us to do as you are doing... again, not "officially sanctioned". I'm thinking it's a liability issue so will probably not ever be "official".

    So far, we're only at the "identifying potential members" stage.
    ALWAYS carry! - NEVER tell!

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    VIP Member Array Kerbouchard's Avatar
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    We have been doing this for about 6 months. It sounds like you guys are developing a great program. I don't know how large your service's are, but if you can make sure you know all of the members there that carry, it could save a lot of confusion, and prevent a possible trajedy. About the worst thing I can imagine is if at my church a BG came in and several guys pulled guns at the same time and we didn't know who the BG was and who may be their accomplice. Keep up the what if scenarios, and maybe add one where a visitor or somebody you guys don't know pulls a gun also...If you figure out what to do, let me know, we're still brain storming on the best way to react. So far what we have came up with is see where he points the gun, but if he is a visitor and doesn't know us, he won't know we are the GG's, either. It's a tough situation, and I hope I never have any real life experience to offer on this particular situation.
    There are two sides to every issue: one side is right and the other is wrong, but the middle is always evil.

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    Member Array rainmaker's Avatar
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    There is a January 2008 series of posts in this forum, starting with questions from a pastor in Florida, about bad guys in the church. A couple others on the subject, too, which you might check out. That being said, at our church, there are usually four, including a LEO, who carry regular during service. We've not advertised the fact, but in a small church the word gets around. In Ohio, carry in a church is a felony unless the leadership gives permission. Pastor and the church council have given permission only to this select few - not a blanket OK - which gives us some level of control.

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    VIP Member Array MNBurl's Avatar
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    I carry every where including church. My father-in-law is a pastor and he always carries at his church.
    MNBurl

    "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking" - George S. Patton.

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    Senior Member Array MR D's Avatar
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    yeah - under Ohio law we are unable to determine "who" can give permission - that being said - the law does say that they may post a no gun sign - some around here have...

    I am a Deacon at my church and have served as Youth Pastor in the recent past...

    My Senior Pastor refused to discuss it, so I am having to send a certified letter to the boards (three of them) asking permission - if the answer is no - well - I was starting to look for another church anyway...

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    Member Array samh's Avatar
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    I took my CC class with my pastor, we asked about this because in AR it is against the law to carry in Church, the instructors (an ex-Sheriff and a current Deputy) said that there was no prevision for anyone to grant permission to carry in a non-carry area, even if the Church officials gave the OK it would still be against the law.
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    VIP Member Array SIGguy229's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, I am it....I am the only one who carries, so when I am not there, it's only by the grace of God.
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    Distinguished Member Array Reborn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SIGguy229 View Post
    Unfortunately, I am it....I am the only one who carries, so when I am not there, it's only by the grace of God.
    Well at least you don't have to worry about people shooting from every direction if something should arise.
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    VIP Member Array Rob99VMI04's Avatar
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    Thats funny I just had lunch with my pastor about this subject today. We have about 1000 people in the church. We probably have some officers but we have really no security plan. I was trying to push him to help develope one JIC. He seems very open to him when I said I know some pastors that actually carry guns themselves.

    Interesting thing: He had no Idea that Colorado had happened, nor about the Gun confiscation in Katrina, nor did he know anything about VA Deadly force laws.

    I told him my points and views on the subject and also a little bit about VA SD Law both during, and after a shooting, and I could see his eyes open up.

    He asked me since I carry a gun would I shoot somebody who punched me in the face. I said Pastor if somebody punched me in the face, I would turn and walk away or repeal an editional attack with equal force. I have the abiilty to end their life only if they back me in a corner and threaten my life or the life of a loved one or grave bodily harm, and present me NO other option. I carry this astotal last resort. If I was really expecting trouble I would slap on my EBR, with a full combat load of 30 round AR Mags my drop leg W G17, Level IV Armor, Call My friends with the same thing and then go only that is if the police couldn't have handled it in the first place.
    “Are you a thermometer or a thermostat, do you reflect or become what is happening in the room or do you change the atmosphere, reset the temperature when you come into the room”?--Chuck Swindoll

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    Too many problems in a church if more than one or two people are carrying, now since in Texas less than 2% of people have CHL's, in a church that has a service of 1000 members it is possible that 10-30 people may be carrying, this is a dissaster waiting to happen *unless they have trained or worked together and as a poster brought up, what do you do if a visitor gets envolved? JUST MY OPINION, folks I dont tread on anyones rights, but hear the whole thing out please. I think in all honesty at any church the people of the church should have the final say in this matter, I think that is why you have so many states with no guns at church laws. I am not exactly happy about my church posting the dreaded 30.06 sign here in texas, (no guns on property past that point where the sign is) This resulted because of one idiot, but in a way I am almost relieved it did happen. This idiot did not understand concealed means concealed, and his removal of his jacket while packing heat frightened some of the sheep in the flock, (pun intended) they complained, had he been reasonable it would have blown over but he was adamant about his legal rights, so they had to post the dreaded 30.06 signs. If I were the pastor I would have had him arrested for failure to conceal, then requested his CHL be revoked, but anyway what It did do was make aware to the sheep in the membership that there had always been a security team at the church, made up of leo or retired leo only. (I am not leo so I cant be a member, at first I was upset about that, now I am happy) Now I could just go to another church, if I felt I needed to carry to church I would, I am confident in the security teams ability. They allow me to worry about simply getting my family to safety. So I guess the point I am trying to make here is that anyone trying to get a "security team" for a church going needs to first get the pastor/deacon/leaders consent, after that the first step is make sure the "membership" knows there is a security team, the security team would also need to know the entire membership, an almost impossible task at larger churches. But most importantly to any "security team" would be to identify anyone who holds a CHL so as to weed out beforehand any possible conflicts that would arise should the need to engage targets become reality. also making sure that even if they are not invited to the security team they are made aware of the team and to a Very limited degree what the teams basic concept envolves, (limited to what the team expects from them) IE hole up, move to cover with your family to a secure room then secure the room, even with people not "officially" on your team you could have designated rooms for each person you know is carrying to go to to provide security/additional security. This is a role I would accept, Had my church not been so quick to post the 30.06 signs, as it stands now my only goal if trouble occurs is to escape and evade to my vehicle parked just outside of the nasty 30.06 signs. And if I make it that far I am not going back inside, no offense to anyone in there who may need an extra gun, but they didnt want it there and I certainly am not risking my life or legal rights to go where I am not wanted, my job is to defend myself and my family, others if I can without bringing risk to my loved ones. sorry I digressed, I guess I still have a small issue with the churches policy, oh well. Hope my thoughts were helpful to some when they were coherant and not rambling.

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    Member Array njeske's Avatar
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    i know i'm not the only one who carries in my church. there's at least 2 more than i know of. i have never outright told my pastor that i carry, but enough people know that it's safe to assume he knows too. we don't have a formal, or even an informal, security. we just all kind of keep an eye out.

  16. #15
    Member Array Southtexas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njeske View Post
    i know i'm not the only one who carries in my church. there's at least 2 more than i know of. i have never outright told my pastor that i carry, but enough people know that it's safe to assume he knows too. we don't have a formal, or even an informal, security. we just all kind of keep an eye out.

    Here is your challenge, next service when your maintaining your situational awareness.
    1 see how many other people are doing the same in non obvious ways. (not me Im looking around because Im trying to find the guy who keeps letting gas out, I swear the guy knows where every vent is and always lines it up to hit me, I move each week but omg just figured out its me ok never mind, im not looking for the gas passer)

    2 get together with the other two that you know of and ask them if they ever considered a scenario involving the church in regards to chl, I bet you get a strange look, first because they dont want you to know they are as paranoid/more paranoid than you are, then because they will realize that as a team you can work much more efficiently.

    3 find out if they know of anyone else in the church,

    4 ask them if they want to go shooting after services one day a month, then see if your group grows a little.

    5 ask your pastor if he would like to go punch some paper, and see if he has any interest at all in handguns, before approaching him about an official security team, or an unofficial one. If you find he probably wont support an official team then dont bring it up<,, if he feels there are liability problems with an official security team then he is also going to be concerned with a non official one. If he doesnt support the concept or feel handguns are a good thing then go back to your cells, or informal teams, where you can all watch each others backs. Either way talk with the guys you know carry bounce ideas off each other if you want to.


    One down side to this whole church security team thing is this DO YOU WANT EVERYONE IN YOUR CHURCH TO KNOW YOU CHL?
    No offence to anyone out there, but there are some real scuzbags who have gone to church all their lives. Dont make them good people, but I dont want them knowing I carry a handgun either.

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