Last week, the worst tragedy in American church history (on a physical level, at least) took place in Sutherland Springs.
Is your church going to be any different this week?
Are you making plans to change your security measures?
There has been some chest thumping among some preachers that make you envision men in suits draped with bandoliers, holding an AK-47 in one hand and a Bible in the other. I am wondering what the reality will be today.
At my frozen corner of the world we are not doing anything differently…yet.
I pointed out to those I have talked to that while last week was awful and scary, the fact is that there have been very few of these incidents and over-reaction is as big a problem as under-reaction. We need not install metal detectors or arm the ushers…yet.
We are discussing some extra security measures. We did active shooter training last year (if you haven’t done it – using responsible law enforcement personnel – I recommend it). We think there are some things we can do that will improve things. But we want our responses to be measured and wise, not reactionary.
The fact is, the church is a place of open doors. We welcome sinners.
I watched the interview documentary about Jeffrey Dahmer last night. Everyone knew he was weird but no one seemed to realize he was a cold-blooded murdering freak. One of the psychologists made that observation. There are a lot of weirdos out there. Most of them are harmless. We do not, as yet, have a rubric for figuring out which crazy person is just a harmless kook and which one is going to take a gun and do harm.
In the meantime, the church is open to kooks. (Some of us should be glad of that, right?)
Enough. I preach in an hour. Anyone got any ideas what I should preach on. (I kid – last time I made a joke like this I got a stern rebuke from some pastor about how I should take preaching more seriously.)