Training to Protect a House of Worship

Our church will not allow security team members to be armed. Thus I am not on the security team.

But my folding 9mm S&W carbine fits perfectly in the backpack I take to church anyways, so…….

And I sit in the balcony.


I would have a very hard time attending a church that does not believe that being armed is acceptable. It is my opinion, of course, but that kind of attitude causes me to question How much the church leadership actually respects the congregation and the people they serve. In today’s society, it is essential to be armed in order to protect, not just yourself, but others as well. It is a sad truth in modern affairs.


The people I’m responsible for are those within my circle—wife and kids. Getting them to safety may not necessarily require me to draw immediately.

Once they’re safe and the opportunity is there for me to help others, then I might communicate my intention to the security team.


To be fair, the church does not officially disapprove of congregants carrying. But their insurance company will not allow paid or volunteer security team members to carry.


I understand. And I was not saying that you should change in any way. I was merely suggesting you consider the possible outcomes of carrying without the safety team being aware of it. It is, obviously your choice to notify or not notify the church team. As long as you are aware of all the possibilities in case of emergency, and you take the proper precautions, you should be OK.


I can understand that, and that does make sense. Perhaps you could bring up with the Pastor suggestion that anybody who is armed within the safety team carry their own insurance such as USCCA. I don’t know how that would work out in the case of an incident and the church being sued or something, but perhaps that is an alternative to look into that may be somewhat of a workaround.


Two weeks ago I attended a USCCA training session at Artemis Defense Institute in Lake Forest, California:

The topic of church defense came up, and it turns out Artemis is already training several church security teams. Contact there for church security training is Angelica Mercuri:

Part of why I attended that session is that it was led by an attorney I was thinking of choosing if I ever need a legal defense as a result of any security-related event. He impressed me greatly, and emphasized the need for insurance in such an event even if no guns are used. Both he and USCCA also suggested knowing who you’d call BEFORE any such event happens.

This week’s Christian Warrior newsletter covered less lethal weapons,

and was forwarded to our team by our leader, as several aren’t CCW. He tries to keep track of all who carry in our church, to be sure no mistakes are made about who is who during any security incident. He also recruits nurses, etc. for the team, as medical problems at church are more likely than anything gun-related.

One other resource, for those with Kindle Unlimited subscriptions is Amazon’s Kindle books. I found lots of books on church security there to borrow and read.

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I teach a non USCCA class that focuses on more than just the active threat. We cover life threatening bleeding control, situational awareness, cover & concealment and how to take the fight to the threat. Let me know if you’d like more info


@Eric404 Welcome to our community, we are glad to have you with us. :slightly_smiling_face:

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I would definitely be interested in more information. I have been part (even leadership) in a few Patriot groups where we trained on many of these topics, but could always use a few refreshers along with new ideas to bring to my church security team. Please feel free to message me with details.

Hello and welcome @Eric404

Several of the local churches in my area now meet once a month to discuss issues that have come up. We share information concerning the scam artists that prey on our churches generosity and compassion. Those that are legitimate we encourage. With the scam artists we pass along pictures and information as to what each of us has done. It is a work in progress. The really big churches do not seem to have time for us. We pray for them anyway.

Some of our churches just refuse to admit that there is any danger outside of the doors that they need to concern themselves with. A few of the elders fear that we are trying to turn the local church into the local “Okay Corral”. They want nothing to do with “guns” inside the church. They claim it is a lack of faith on our part. It doesn’t matter how many scriptures we quote calling for the protection of our faith and of our members. And unfortunately, it always ends with “that will never happen here”.

My team even suffers from this attitude. When asked if we have a plan for … whatever; The overwhelming answer is " … We have Bob. We don’t need a plan".

Well, Bob had a stroke last month, on his 66th birthday.

I attend the seminars put out by the FBI and the Dept. Of Justice on “Surviving an Active Shooter”. I am an active member with the Faith Based Security Network (I strongly encourage you to chase them down and look at all the training and information that they generate for Protecting Houses of Worship. It is first rate!) Bot agencies have a lot of experience with this. And they are very interested in helping. They have sent agents to us more than once to help setup our safety team as well as to look over our setup and make suggestions. There are even grants available to help with all that too.

Good luck to you, and may God keep you safe always.

Dr. Bob Thomas

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