Church-goers and faith leaders consider security measures | KOB 4

Church-goers and faith leaders consider security measures

Meg Hilling
November 20, 2017 07:23 PM

FARMINGTON, N.M. -- People are supposed to feel safe in a house of worship, but that feeling was shattered after the mass shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas.


As church-goers throughout the country begin to rebuild that notion of safety, some are taking heightened security measures under serious consideration.

"If it can happen in that little old tiny town in Bible belt USA, I guarantee you it can happen here," security presenter Bill Hall said.   

Packing into the pews of Emmanuel Baptist in Farmington last Thursday, faith leaders and church-goers of all religions met to ask questions and discuss security options.

"Do you start in your sanctuary on Sunday morning worship? I mean how did you guys start?" a faith leader said.

"How do you feel about martial arts training in church?" a church-goer asked.

"Once you get your security team in place, what is the best method to disseminate that information?" another church-goer asked.

They talked old-school techniques like "ALICE" drills, or training civilians how to react in the case of an active shooter. Conceal carry also came up.

"A firearm may be an option. You may totally decide not to, that is an option.  All we are saying is develop a plan. Be prepared instead of saying I wish we had done it," Hall said.

For as many churches that were present at this meeting, there were just as many different ideas of how to keep worshippers safe. But there was one point everyone appeared to agree upon."

"You want to be, you have open hearts. You want to be very welcoming. But that doesn't mean you have to be stupid about it. So there are things you can do," Safer-U presenter Gary Risley said.


Meg Hilling

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