Active shooter training planned for Houston faith leaders

- In light of the Sutherland Springs Baptist church massacre, the question is how to protect the faithful who go to worship on a regular basis.

The Harris County Precinct 1 Constable’s Office will be offering an active shooter training for faith leaders to be prepared in the event of an unthinkable tragedy.

“Evil doesn’t respect church. Evil doesn’t respect hierarchy and it doesn’t respect places of worship,” says Keion Henderson, lead pastor of The LightHouse Church.

Pastor Henderson says his sanctuary, especially on Sundays, is secure.

“You could be sitting next to a security personnel and not even know it because evil does not respect places of worship,” says Pastor Henderson.

Thousands attend weekly services at The LightHouse Church. Signs posted outside read, ‘open carry of handguns prohibited,’ ensuring those who choose to praise freely are not openly packing.

But what about those churches where membership is relatively low and security is limited?

"All we’re trying to do is buy time for us to get there. That’s the goal,” says Harris County Precinct 1 Constable Alan Rosen.

Constable Rosen thinks it’s a necessary discussion and is welcoming faith leaders on Wednesday to talk about ways to keep worshippers safe, which includes arming church members.

"Absolutely on the table. It has to be on the table," says Constable Rosen regarding church members carrying guns during service. "As long as they have the training."

The reality is soft targets, like First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, have recently become horrific crime scenes where the body count is historic.

Education, Constable Rosen says, is key.

“Our evil doers will think twice about going into some of the churches knowing they’re now prepared," claims Constable Rosen.

“And somehow, some way, we will rise from this,” says Pastor Henderson.

The active shooter training for faith leaders is set for Wednesday at 6 p.m. at the Precinct 1 Constable’s Office located at 1302 Preston St. Houston, Texas.

Constable Rosen stressed that those leaders who attend should be a part of a church where security is nonexistent or lacking.

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