Hey, this one is for all you church-goers (pastors too) out there. What plans do you have in place for safety in your house of worship in the event that a shooter should come in? Have you discussed this with your pastor or other people who legally carry concealed?
I just finished a first meeting of our Church Safety Team. The team covers a broad responsibility of everything from due dilligence on background checking our children's workers to fire plans. But the main focus of this first meeting was dealing with the spectrum of possible violent encounters (from the beligerant visitor to the active shooter). Obviously, I may be preaching to the proverbial choir here, but here are some of the real life situations in the last decade:
- March 8, 2009 – Maryville, Illinois – First Baptist Church – 1 killed - Terry Sedlacek shot Pastor Fred Winters and when his gun jammed, tried to stabbed himself and two men who tried to subdue him.
- January 10, 2009 – Henrico, Virginia - First Free Will Baptist Church – 1 stabbed - Rev. James Bullock was in the church alone about 8:15 a.m. when two men came in and demanded money. Bullock was beaten and stabbed twice after he told the men there was no safe in the church.
- December 24, 2008 – College Park, Maryland - Holy Redeemer Catholic Church – 1 injured - Shanon Washington beat and mugged Wayne Williams in the parking lot of the church. Washington is charged with attempted murder, assault and robbery in the attack.
- December 21, 2008 – Henderson, Texas - Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints – An armed gunman fires a shot outside the church, then came inside and demanded everyone’s wallet.
- November 23, 2008 -Clifton, New Jersey- St. Thomas Syrian Orthodox Knanaya Church – 2 killed, 1 injured - Joseph Pallipurath killed his wife and one unrelated man and injured a third person. After his capture, he said that he would have killed all the worshipers if he had had a machine gun.
- July 28, 2008 – Knoxville, Tennessee - Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church – 2 killed, 6 injured--Jim D. Adkisson pulled a 12-guage shotgun from a guitar case and killed 2, injured 6.
- June 24, 2008 – Lanham, Maryland – Two armed gunmen, Alozie Chinagozim Onuoha and Ugo Onuoha burst into the church business office on a Monday and demanded money. They escaped with thousands of dollars but were later arrested. At the time of the robbery, there were dozens of children attending a church summer camp at the facility.
- August 12, 2007 - Neosho, Missouri - First Congregational Church - 3 killed, 5 injured - Eiken Elam Saimon shot and killed the pastor and two deacons and wounded five others.
- January 28, 2007 – Columbus, Ohio - Christ the King Church - Wendell Hollingsworth and Celeste Smith barged into the church with a gun, and announced, "This is a robbery." Smith began to grab purses while the Hollingsworth demanded wallets at gunpoint. The congregation didn't let them get away, as ushers tackled the pair and held them until police arrived.
- October 19, 2006 – Chicago, Illinois – Israel of God’s Church – Two armed gunmen entered the church during evening services, forced everyone at gunpoint to the front of the church. After firing a shot in the air, demanded money and valuables and then fled the scene.
- May 21, 2006 - Baton Rouge, Louisiana - The Ministry of Jesus Christ Church - 4 killed - The four at the church who were shot were members of Erica Bell's family; she was abducted and murdered elsewhere; Bell's mother, church pastor Claudia Brown, was seriously wounded - Anthony Bell, 25, was the shooter.
- February 26, 2006 - Detroit, Michigan - Zion Hope Missionary Baptist Church - 2 killed + shooter - Kevin L. Collins, who reportedly went to the church looking for his girlfriend, later killed himself.
- August 29, 2005 – Sash, Texas - Sash Assembly of God Church – 4 killed + shooter --A.P. Crenshaw who lived across the street from the Sash Assembly of God church, exchanged words in the church parking lot with a church member who asked Crenshaw to leave. Crenshaw returned a short time later and the church member, at close range, and then shot Pastor, James Armstrong. Crenshaw then drove to an intersection, where he shot and killed the two women in a truck after they tried to flee and hide. Crenshaw was reported to have been hunting on foot for the Pastor’s wife. A 10-member SWAT team made two attempts to enter Crenshaw's house but retreated when he shot at them, Moore said. Police finally entered the house to find Crenshaw dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to head.
- March 12, 2005 - Brookfield, Wisconsin - Living Church of God - 7 killed + shooter - Terry Ratzmann opened fire on the congregation, killing seven, including Pastor Randy L. Gregory and his son James Gregory, and wounding four before taking his own life.
- July 30, 2005 - College Park, Georgia - World Changers Church International - shooter killed - Air Force Staff Sgt. John Givens was shot five times by a police officer after charging the officer, following violent behavior.
- December 18, 2004 – Garden Grove, California, Crystal Cathedral— The longtime conductor of the Crystal Cathedral Orchestra, Johnny Carl, kills himself at the cathedral in Garden Grove, Calif., after an argument with another employee and a nine-hour standoff.
- Oct. 5, 2003 - Atlanta, Georgia - Turner Monumental AME Church - 2 killed + shooter - Shelia Wilson walked into the church while preparations are being made for service and shot the pastor, her mother and then herself.
- June 10, 2002 - Conception, Missouri - Benedictine monastery - 2 killed + shooter - Lloyd Robert Jeffress shot four monks in the monastery killing two and wounding two, before killing himself.
- March 12, 2002 - Lynbrook, New York - Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church - 2 killed - Peter Troy, a former mental patient, opens fire during Mass, killing the priest and a parishioner. He later receives a life sentence.
- May 18, 2001 - Hopkinsville, Kentucky - Greater Oak Missionary Baptist Church - 2 killed - Frederick Radford stood up in the middle of a revival service and began shooting at his estranged wife, Nicole Radford, killing her and a woman trying to help her.
- Sept. 15, 1999 - Fort Worth, Texas - Wedgewood Baptist Church - 7 killed + shooter - Larry Gene Ashbrook shot dead seven people and injured a further seven at a concert by Christian rock group Forty Days in Fort Worth, Texas before killing himself.
Where two are gathered together...someone else may have a gun and some bad intentions.
Stay armed...carry in church (if you can)...stay safe!
That's really sad if you think about it. What has become of our society?
Originally Posted by retsupt99
I am a pastor who carries concealed in church. There are a few others in my church who do, too.
Recently, I attended an excellent training seminar about church security presented by Vaughn Baker of Stategos International.
courses - Strategos International - 1-888-569-5444
I recommend this course very highly. My brother is a retired SWAT member, police officer, sniper, and firearm instructor. He will be using what Vaughn presented to create a multi-level security team:
Lowest level--greeters and parking attendants who are trained to identify treats and diffuse potential problems verbally.
Mid level--non-armed security / safety team that will deal with emergency situations (non-violent disruptions, weather emergencies, fire, medical emergencies, etc.)
Highest level--armed security who are trained by certified handgun instructors.
This last issue is vitally important. For insurance reasons, it is imperative that any official armed security be trained by trainers with up-to-date certifications.
I agree that this is something every church, of any size, should do.
God bless your efforts. Remember--there is more than one kind of wolf out there. Be on guard for both (Acts 20:29).
PastorPack, that is an impressive list you have complied there. Sad that you can even fill in past 1 bullet point, and I am sure you missed a few.
I carry in church..........:smile:
I know Vaughn Baker. His dad was my science teacher.
Originally Posted by JSBaker
What a small world.
I carry no matter what the place or the scenario, my wife gives me a hard time when i carry just to eat at abc pizza...but whatever im gonna be ready, you never know with all the crazies runnin around now a days...
My church leadership is very happy to know that I am there as a "Sheep Dog" but unfortunately is so afraid of "liability" that there is NO intention on their part to officially sanction or even recognize a "Security Team" especially an armed one. A few of us "individuals" have talked about training together but it seems like a waste of our time to even try to get the leadership on board.
I'll forward the information but I know where it's going to end up. :frown:
It's good to know that not every church feels the way mine does. :hand10:
Originally Posted by PastorPack
Missed one from North Carolina 2007 , Man arrested for murder at church
By J. Eric Eckard
Assistant News Editor
Friday, October 19, 2007
While mourners were remembering Debbie Kornegay Friday at a lunchtime memorial service today, detectives were charging her suspected killer with murder.
Tommy Lee Holiday, 30, a homeless Rocky Mount man, was charged with first-degree murder, attempted murder, two counts of robbery and larceny of a vehicle.
He killed her in the kitchen of the church. She and another lady were trying to help him find shelter.
I carry concealed in church. No one even knows except a friend who took the CHclass with me.
For those wanting more info (particularly pastors and others wanting to start a security team), check out christiansecuritynetwork-dot-org and churchsecuritymember-dot-com. Good folks and they do good work. Lots of info on both sites. Free newsletters available. Modest membership fee on both gets you even more. The "how to get started" books, etc. they both have available explain things well and I highly recommended them. I joined up, and hitting these sites is part of my "first thing" routine every day.
"I know Vaughn Baker. His dad was my science teacher.
What a small world."
That's funny! He is a good man.
And there's no relation--honest!
I think you missed the one that happened a year or three ago in Colorado Springs, where the shooter killed a couple of people in the parking lot and then went into the church where an armed security guard shot and killed him........
I have started carrying in church as well, and feel like there is a neon sign over my head.
That is incorrect the lady that stopped that threat was not a security guard for the church she was just another worshiper who took the saftey of those around her seriously. The tradgedy that happened at New Life was stopped by an ordinary citizen that made a difference.
Originally Posted by Scott Davies
I have been thinking about this subject for sometime now...since I read an article in a "gun" magazine. I mentioned the possibility of a security team to my pastor & the leadership team but this seemed to fall on deaf ears. I will, however, be packing in church when my CWP arrives in about 2 months.