Shootings give rise to church security concerns

Balancing hospitality with safety
The day after a church shooting on a March Sunday that left an Illinois pastor dead, church security consultant Marc Brooks fielded calls from eight congregations eager to get firearms into the hands of worship staff or volunteers.

But keeping a congregation safe from violent outbursts doesn’t have to involve guns in the sanctuary, he said.

“If you need firearms training, then we do that,” says Brooks, a deputy sheriff and chief instructor for Protective Services Training and Consultants in Thornton, Colorado. But sometimes church security “doesn’t require a firearm. It just requires that you’re alert and that you’re in shape and that you’re able to protect your pastor.”


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