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Shootings Spark Conversation About Security In Houses Of Worship In New England

On Nov. 27, the Council of Churches of Western Massachusetts hosted a summit on church security. Pictured, Archbishop Timothy Paul speaks.
Photo by Sean Teehan for NEPR

On a cold November evening, Bishop Bruce Shaw led a prayer.

“All this violence is going on, but we know you’re the answer, Lord, Jesus. That you can curb some of this,” Shaw said in front of the approximately 50 people gathered at the Centro Cristiano Nacion De Jesus church in Springfield, Massachusetts.

“Amen!” some people sitting in the pews answered. “That’s right!” others replied.

But the pastors, parishioners and law enforcement officials there were looking beyond prayer for answers to how churches can protect their members.

In recent weeks, we’ve seen gunmen target churches in Texas and California. These deadly incidents at houses of worship have sparked a conversation about church security among clergy in New England.

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