Dec. 11 free webinar provides training on church security

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Empty chairs sit in the building of First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, TX, honoring those killed Nov. 5 in the worst mass shooting in Texas history. Training such as that through a free webinar offered Monday, Dec. 11 can help prevent such tragedies, say security experts. JAMES THIELEN/Google Maps

DULUTHA free webinar on Monday, Dec. 11 will provide pastors with tools for increasing the level of church security. The topic, says a Georgia Baptist evangelism consultant, plays heavily in church evangelism efforts.

Scott Smith

“When we see reports of a church shooting, it makes people wonder if they’re safe going to church,” testifies Scott Smith of Church Revitalization and Evangelism for the Georgia Baptist Mission Board.

The more ways churches can communicate they are safe places, the better, adds Smith. For instance, many congregations receive training through organizations such as MinistrySafe regarding child predators. Next Monday, North Georgia Security Consultants (NGSC) would complement such steps by helping churches identify – and fix – gaps in overall security.

An effort to reach others

Hosted by Smith and featuring a presentation by NGSC owner Ben O’Neal, the free webinar will focus on several areas of concern such as:

  • church security myths
  • identifying and closing security holes
  • studying the flow of your church’s foot traffic
  • training staff and volunteers in church security
  • what to do in the case of an active shooter situation.

“The more we communicate to visitors that we take safety seriously, the more we’ll reach people,” says Smith. “We’re now in an era where we have to find ways to be safe and smart.”

Major Ben O’Neal

O’Neal, an active duty Army Major, holds extensive training in security measures. His company focuses on translating that experience for residential and commercial properties. However, specific attention goes toward houses of worship.

The hour-long webinar begins at 3:30 p.m. EST and includes a live Q&A session, Smith notes. Sign up here to take part.

“Our first step is to find out what we need to do to be safe,” he says. “Guys like Major O’Neal can show us how to do that and be prepared for whatever scenario we may face.”

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