Across America pastors and church leaders are trying to figure out how to effectively implement armed church security. For those with a budget large enough to hire professional security, there is little in the way of any issue. For those that can't manage that budgetary strain, they are looking hard at volunteer armed church security.
Concealed carry laws in states that allow cc in churches are the ones offering the opportunity as well as the vast array of concerns. Allowing volunteers to be armed on church campuses poses questions not posed in other settings.
Those are physical, emotional, mental, legal and what makes it different - spiritual.
Some of the laws across the country allow ccw in churches as part of state law. Others allow ccw on the basis of individual churches' decisions and specific permission. In either case the decisions don't come easily.
Most people in my state of Arkansas don't think in terms of number of churches throughout the state. There doesn't seem to be any means of getting solid statistical numbers, but it's safe to say they number in the thousands (of churches). Yep, in the Fort Smith city limits alone well over 200.
Every church in Arkansas is being affected, one way or the other, by new concealed carry amendments allowing churches to decide if, how, who, what ..... concerning concealed carry. For churches not wanting any concealed carry in their facilities, they don't have to do anything. It's still against the law, even with ccw licenses, unless specific permission is given by the church.
On the other hand, it's provided both opportunity along with serious concerns for churches not having budgets that support professional armed security. I've spoken now to multiple area pastors and other church leaders. The question "should we form a volunteer armed security team?" opens a door that leads down a lot of paths.
Plus virtually all pastors are getting pressed to answer if people can carry concealed.
Starting from a church security perspective, there is an obvious advantage to having some capable people armed.
Some questions that arise are:
What kind of handguns should be carried concealed?
What should volunteers' qualifications be?
What is the proper mindset for volunteer armed security?
Who is criminally liable if somebody gets shot?
Who is liable on a civil basis?
How do we train our armed volunteers?
How do we place them for best safety?
Should our armed security volunteers be discreet or clearly identified?
How are people in the congregation going to feel about it?
If we don't do it is it going to make people mad?
...... on and on it goes.
I'm Mark Rogers, best known online as the Christian Gun Owner.
I can help you with many of the church volunteer armed security concerns you have.
My unique experience as a Christian, church member, handgun operations expert, shooting group leader and church staff member gives me the perspective you need.
Perspective to wisely choose, teach proper balance between security and sanctity, what types of handguns are acceptable, and the ideal armed volunteer.
This is not a tactical training program. It is a consultation service for transitioning to armed volunteer church security personnel.
Contact me. I'll be proud to help you navigate the winding path to getting your team solidly in place.