Should places of worship prepare themselves for violent attacks?
Mass shootings, now a regular staple of the American news diet, are only massive because they target places we gather in crowds, such as schools, movie theaters, shopping malls and religious buildings. As businesses and city governments develop contingency plans in case an event like the Las Vegas shooting unfolds around them, parishioners such as Mark Ewing want their churches to be prepared for the worst, too. "I don't want something bad to happen to the people I care about in a place where you're supposed to feel said," said Ewing, who attends Lutheran Church of the Resurrection in Anderson Township. "It happens very quick, without any warning, and it's usually a fairly devastating event." Carl Chinn is the president of the Faith-Based Security Network, a newly founded organization meant to teach parishioners and faith leaders to be prepared for attacks such as the Sutherland Springs shooting, which claimed the lives of 26 congregants at a Texan Baptist church, and the Charleston shooting, which killed nine people attending Bible study at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.