Protecting Churches from ViolenceFound 18 stories for this story collection.
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Tragedy in TX: 26 killed in So. Bapt. church shootingSAN ANTONIO, Texas (BP) --- The 14-year-old daughter of a Southern Baptist pastor was reportedly among 26 people killed when an armed man opened fire during Sunday morning (Nov. 5) worship services at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, a congregation about 35 miles southeast of San Antonio.
The pastor, Frank Pomeroy, and his wife were both out of town when the attack occurred, said Mitch Kolenovsky, a field ministry strategist with the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, who contacted Read More
Pa. church shooting: member charged with manslaughter
NORTH WALES, Pa. (BP) -- A member of a Philadelphia Southern Baptist church has been charged with voluntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment in the shooting death of a fellow church member during a worship service April 24.
Mark Storms, 46, allegedly shot and killed 27-year-old Robert Braxton during an altercation in the worship center of Keystone Fellowship's campus in North Wales, Pa., shortly after the 11 a.m. service began. Read More
Fatal shooting leaves Pa. church 'grieved'NORTH WALES, Pa. (BP) -- Investigators are seeking to determine whether a fatal shooting yesterday (April 24) during a worship service at a Philadelphia-area Southern Baptist church was "justified under the law," according to media reports.
Keystone Fellowship Church, a congregation with four campuses in the Philadelphia area, confirmed on Facebook that "one man
was shot and another is being questioned by police" regarding an ... Read More
Bellevue security subdues 'heavily armed' manMEMPHIS (BP) -- A "heavily armed" man was subdued and arrested at the Memphis-area Bellevue Baptist Church Easter Sunday, the congregation's director of security services told Baptist Press.
Texas-based church security expert Jimmy Meeks told BP the incident serves as an example of "heads-up" response to a potential threat. The man -- 31-year-old Marcus Donald -- who was taken into custody remains under mental evaluation, according to media reports. Read More
Bombs at 2 New Mexico churches halt services
LAS CRUCES, N.M. (BP) -- Small bombs exploded within minutes of each other Aug. 2 at two Las Cruces, N.M., churches -- including a Southern Baptist congregation -- cancelling Sunday morning services and necessitating evacuations at other churches across the city.
No one was hurt in the explosions that caused minimal damage at Calvary Baptist Church, 1800 S. Locust St., and Holy Cross Catholic Church, 1327 N. Miranda St., the Associated Press reported. Read More
Church security: need highlighted by S.C. shooting
CHARLESTON, S.C. (BP) -- The massacre of nine Christians during a prayer service at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C., highlights the need for all congregations to implement security measures, a security expert told Baptist Press.
"The biggest obstacle for churches is just not believing that [a violent attack] could happen at their churches," said Jimmy Meeks, a Southern Baptist police officer in Hurst, Texas, who presents church security seminars across America. People "don't listen to what needs to be done until they believe it needs to be done." Read More
Shooters in churches: Federal panel's guidebook counsels 'run, hide, or fight''Just have some men in place who are willing to die." - Jimmy Meeks, 'Sheepdog Seminar' leader, on countering violent attacks in churchesWASHINGTON (BP) -- The federal government has released a guidebook to help churches respond to shooters and other on-site emergencies as part of President Obama's executive actions to fight gun violence. Read More
'Sheepdog' sessions prep churches for violenceFORT WORTH, Texas (BP) -- Churches have long been considered safe havens for worship but, with 433 people killed on church property since 1999, they have become more dangerous than schools.
Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas, knows such violence firsthand. A shooter entered a youth service in 1999, killed seven and wounded seven others. Read More