In the past few months there has been a great reporting of students who have made threats against their schools by students. Look how many people were aware and identified the killer in Florida before the dust cleared. Because they knew through social media and personal testimony that this killer was not mentally healthy but failed to say anything to anyone. There are safe avenues for our students to report suspected behavior and as a result violent attacks have been stopped.
SO, WHAT ABOUT THE CHURCHES……
A domestic dispute that happened this last weekend prompted me to ask the question about a church being a safe place to tell. In the incident this weekend people were aware that there was and had been issues but it appears that the church did not have any response to be able to help protect the victim. This was also the case in Southerland Springs, TX. According to statistics by my friend Carl Chinn, since 1999 there have been 207 DEADLY FORCE INCIDENTS AT FAITH BASED ORGANIZATIONS IN THE U.S. DIRECTLY IDENTIFIED AS DOMESTIC SPILLOVER. These incidents are ranked number two behind robbery. One major difference is that Domestic Spillover is identifiable and has a greater chance of prevention.
A COUPLE OF CONTRIBUTING FACTORS
WHAT CAN WE DO?
Victims and others that know of situations that are happening in their church that could be a security risk need to know where they can go in confidentiality to make the necessary people aware of the situation without fear of rejection or judgment. As I train church’s, I stress that THE CHURCH IS HERE FOR THE BROKEN AND THE HURTING. We as believers can’t lose sight of that fact.
I realize that every church structure is different and there can’t be a “cookie cutter” response to security situations. So, with that in mind here are some things to consider for your church to create that safe space.
PREVENTION THROUGH TRAINING
As I prepare this monthly newsletter my mind reels about all the different things that I could say on so these subjects and so many others. So, if you find that your mind is reeling as well, feel free to contact me to further discuss any of the things mentioned here this month. Let me leave you with a few important things that can easily get overlooked when we get busy with life and with serving.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.