It Can Happen Here
Most pastors will say there has been at least one incident in their career in which they felt vulnerable or in which their church had a “near miss.”
Rev. Jerry McConnell, former pastor, was caught off guard when an “accidental visitor” stood up and disrupted service one Sunday morning years ago. The disruption sparked an internal discussion about safety and security in their church.
Rev. McConnell called a meeting and asked if there was anyone with the interest and expertise in this area that they could draw on to help the congregation start a safety and security ministry. He was met with overwhelming assistance (read more about the accidental visitor).
People bring their issues with them when they come to church, regardless of whether they are members, visitors, friends, or strangers. And when the front doors are open and the welcome mat is rolled out, churches have to be prepared for who, and what, walks in.
As public gathering places churches are at risk for emergency situations similar to schools, offices, malls, and hospitals.
Whether the emergency is in the form of a medical emergency, missing child, severe weather, domestic violence spill-over, or a disruptive person, being unprepared is no longer an option.
A Commitment to Ministry
A safety and security program in a church is different than in a secular organization. Churches need to protect their people and, at the same time, minister to the broken and hurting. For a safety and security program to fit within a church, it must be focused as a ministry of the church. The pastor's involvement, your involvement, is critical. The church members look to the pastor for guidance.
“If safety and security is important to the pastor, then people are going to pick up on that,” says Rev. McConnell, now director of ministry outreach division of the Center for Personal Protection and Safety. “If it’s something that the pastor ignores or deems as unimportant, then people are going to shrug it off.”
Practical Help With a Ministry Focus
We can help you start the discussion, assess your risks, and even improve existing efforts.
The Church Safety & Security Guidebook/DVD Kit
- 256 Page manual
- Step-by-step instructions
- 20+ Checklists, applications, forms
- Real life examples
- Sample policies
- Sample plan
- Training scenarios
$39.95 plus shipping & handling