Black and white Sound Cloud icon Black and white YouTube icon Black and white LinkedIn icon Black and white Facebook icon

Actuating an Active Shooter Response

Determine, Develop, Drill, Defend

Based on the Sheepdog Church Security training course
Active Shooter Neutralization and Lock Down Drills

Hello I am prepared nametag

In The Bible

As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered” (Romans 8:36 - quoting Psalm 44:22).

The prudent sees danger and hides himself, but the simple go on and suffer for it (Proverbs 27:12).

So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober (1 Thessalonians 5:6).

I inspected the walls of Jerusalem that were broken down and its gates that had been destroyed by fire (Nehemiah 2:13).

[Jesus] said to them, “But now let the one who has a moneybag take it, and likewise a knapsack. And let the one who has no sword sell his cloak and buy one" (Luke 22:36).

In the News

News stories recounted in other articles show how lives were spared in some churches because they were prepared, while in other locations the results were devastating.

A Prudent Defense

As the verses above indicate, it is wise to be ready to defend the flock against any potential threats, especially (1) the most likely, and (2) the most devastating. To put an active shooter response into place in our church and carry it out, we do four things: Determine, Develop, Drill, and Defend:

Determine -

Determination is the decision-making process.

Develop -

This is where we actually build the Active Shooter Response.

This also includes planning evacuation and lockdown procedures best suited to the church's facilities. Plan how the Safety Team will work together for an incident. This will depend on the church's layout and the size of the team.

Realistically, we might not be able to have everything we would like. In that case, we have to prioritize, doing only what is most critical, passing on the rest for now.

Drill -

The old saying is, "Practice makes perfect." In other words, we learn best by doing, by acting out what we have read, heard, and seen. For an immediate and correct response in a fast-moving emergency situation, such as an armed assault, these need to become second nature, so that the team members will make the right decisions and take the right actions at critical moments.

There are certain procedures to be learned by safety team members. Examples are, what will you do if you are in a certain place (such as the sanctuary) when notified of an active killer inside the church. What if you are in the Youth & Children's Department?

Defend -

Defending the church is not just an event, but an ongoing process.

Through the year there is special training in certain subjects, such as Active Shooter Neutralization and Lock Down Drills in November. Sheepdog Church Security has developed online training courses so that (1) members do not have to wait for a class to receive training, (2) they can refresh their training at any time, and (3) they do not have to miss out because of being unable to take a class at a certain time and place.


To learn more about actuating an active shooter response, get Sheepdog Church Security's free download here: _______________ .


  1. Sheepdog Church Security, TrainingCourses, "Active Shooter Neutralization and Lock Down Drills" [].
  2. Wikipedia, "Charleston church shooting" [].
  3. Boucher, D., J. Ebert, N. Allison, N. Rau, A. Wadhwani, and N. De Gennaro, "How the Nashville church shooting unfolded: A timeline", The Tennessean, Published 2:57 p.m. CT Sept. 25, 2017 | Updated 12:08 a.m. CT Sept. 26, 2017 [].
  4. Wikipedia, "Sutherland Springs church shooting" [].
  5. Wikipedia, "2007 Colorado YWAM and New Life shootings" [].
  6. 6. Sheepdog Church Security, TrainingMaterials [].