Church security sometimes seems to be an absurd topic. Some people have just never thought of it before. Despite all the things they have seen on the news and read in papers, they are convinced that “bad things” can’t happen in churches. Other people believe that church security is somehow a sign of lack of faith in God. In a survey of 4000 churches, more than 75% did not have emergency or security plans (Hawkins, 2012).
The irony is God has always used his people to accomplish his tasks. Pastors preach the word of God. Deacons assist the pastor and take care of the flock. Of course, God could accomplish all these tasks by himself, but instead he chooses to allow his followers to help him.
This is true for every function of the church. Some Christians have the gift to take care of children and teach Sunday school. Some Christians have the gift to work as ushers to welcome members and help first-time visitors. Other Christians work in administrative positions.
Like other Christians, safety and security volunteers use their gifts to serve the church. Just as all Christians face tasks that need to be completed on during the week, safety and security volunteers have tasks that need to be accomplished during the week too. Sheepdog Church Security has worked for 6 years to help safety and security volunteers improve their churches’ abilities to provide safe places for worship and fellowship.
The modern church faces a number of risks:
- natural disasters;
- technological disasters; and,
- human-caused disasters.
Natural disasters are often unpredictable and include the following:
- severe weather including blizzards, tornadoes, floods, and hurricanes;
- landslides; and,
- disease epidemics.
Technological disasters are generally unpredictable. They can be either accidental or intentional and include the following:
- traffic accidents;
- power failures;
- computer failures as a result of viruses; and,
- hazardous materials such as oil spills.
Criminal activity includes deliberate actions intended to harm others:
- vandalism and arson;
- hate crimes;
- physical violence; and,
- sexual abuse/assault.
Criminal activity is the main issue in this chapter because it’s the most easily prevented. Churches experience the same types of crimes as any other business or community center. In addition, they may be seen as facing an increased risk because Christians are generally trusting and open. As Christians, we are rightly open to everybody in the community. We want people who are struggling with life to seek solutions through Jesus Christ our Savior. The challenge we face is that some people want to harm us. Just as Jesus Christ had many enemies, so will his followers. That is why Jesus tells us to be “shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves
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