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Thread: Right to carry in churches

  1. #1
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    This is not to ask whether one can carry in church as I know the law in NC to be you can, as long as not posted. The only point I want to make is what does your particular church support?

    After a lot of research today concerning various Christian religious variants, of which my research had nothing at all to do with gun control, I ran across some extremely surprising information. I was mainly researching Presbyterian, Methodist, Advent Christian and Baptist. While doing so, I noticed that Presbyterian and Methodist has specific statements concerning gun control:

    Presbyterian - http://www.pcusa.org/101/101-gun.htm

    The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has a thirty year history of support for gun control legislation. intentionally work toward removing handguns and assault weapons from our homes and our communities.

    Methodist - http://archives.umc.org/interior.asp?ptid=1&mid=937
    (4) develop advocacy groups within local congregations to advocate for the eventual reduction of the availability of guns in society with a particular emphasis upon handguns, handgun ammunition, assault weapons, automatic weapons, automatic weapon conversion kits, and guns that cannot be detected by traditionally used metal detection devices. These groups can be linked to community-based, state, and national organizations working on gun and violence issues;
    (5) support federal legislation to regulate the importation, manufacturing, sale, and possession of guns and ammunition by the general public. Such legislation should include provisions for the registration and licensing of gun purchasers and owners, appropriate background investigation and waiting periods prior to gun purchase, and regulation of subsequent sale;
    (6) call upon all governments of the world in which there is a United Methodist presence to establish national bans on ownership by the general public of handguns, assault weapons, automatic weapon conversion kits, and weapons that cannot be detected by traditionally used metal-detection devices;
    According to http://www.religionlink.com/tip_080603.php , Catholic bishops, Evangelical Lutheran and Episcopal church have all supported and encouraged gun control measures.

    Baptist - I could not find a position statement on the SBC website, however there are many quotes and other media prints clearly defining the Baptist as being very gun friendly including this one from Richard Land, president of the SBC's (Southern Baptist Convention) Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission - http://sbcbaptistpress.org/bpnews.asp?id=13370 :
    Our forefathers understood that a free people had to be able to defend themselves against the government which seeks to gather more and more power to itself and wants to disarm its citizenry and It is a ridiculous and dangerous argument that says the Second Amendment is referring only to the armed forces of the United States," Land said. "The Second Amendment protects the right of individuals."
    :celebrate
    I further called a local Baptist pastor and asked about carrying concealed in his congregation. He stated that as long as the person was legally licensed and trained he did not have a problem with it. Further stated that he has a few people (some with LEO background some without) that he has personally asked to carry while at church to further protect the parishioners. It is not widely known who they are or that they carry, it is just between him and them. He acknowledged that to refuse to accept that evil people who intend to do harm never enters a place of sanctuary is akin to burying your head in the sand and a quick news search would prove it.

    I now know it is time to get back to the religion of my roots due to this and many other issues with where I currently attend. My question to you all is am I the only one that was so naive as to not realize that almost every single religious sect out there refuse to acknowledge a person's right to protect themselves with a firearm and are generally actively fighting to make sure the government takes that right away?:shock:

    I won't even get into why churches choose to get involved in-depth with politics in the first place. Not only would that be waayyy off-topic but its bedtime and I would rather not retire enraged.

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    The Anglican Orthodox Church has no rule on concealed carry.

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    Let me explain my original two word post...

    I was raised Catholic but after meeting my wife, she's Methodist, I attend what's important to her.

    Being somewhat independent I have not asked, or investigated, what the stanceon firearms is of thechurch I attend. I don't go there for that.

    Original: Why ask?

    -R

    (edited as I didn't read the whole OP)

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    I've OCed at my church a couple of times, my pastor received a complaint so he asked me to not OC. I have been CCing ever since and he thinks that's really cool. He is not against OC and the people who complained are gone. If I were to OC on a Wed. night service where the crowd is smaller, He'd probably not even care. He is going to eventually carry his weapon to church as well (CC). There is a LEO that has a weapon as well, although he seldom carries it in church. Almost everyone in my church including the ladies that are my age (18-27) carry either a gun (concealed) or large knives, or pepper spray. If someone were to come in with the intent to kill, let's just say they wouldn't make it past the church lobby. I know sometimes there would be two CCers in service (me and my bro who is ex-leo).

    There are many gun owners in my church but only a tiny bit of them carry, if everyone who owned a handgun at my church carried.....darn ran out of fingers (seriously). There are about 45ish of us on Sunday, and I'd say about a dozen of us (that I know of) are carrying some sort of weapon.

    We are not a 501c3 incorporated church and we are an independent baptist church not affiliated with any official baptist denomination where we turn in our numbers and converts. The head of our church is the Lord Jesus Christ, so we pretty much make up our own rules in regards to this type of stuff.

    Can't say the same for the Roman Catholic church next door.

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    What is this permission from the pastor that you speak of? Unposted = legal to carry in NC. No church exemption like other states.

    My Methodist church must have missed the memo. There was a call for off duty LEO's to carry to church. I carry CC and several people know. I'm not asking permission though. My church has a men's weekend every few years at the local wildlife club. Lot's of shooting and Bible study going on. Got the local SWAT and STAR teams out a few years ago and got to play with the cool toys. Missed that weekend. Still kicking myself.

    Some Christian's go way to far with the pacifism idea.

    Gonna look into that info though.

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    I must beg forgiveness from all!!! As hard as I try not to state assumptions and gossip, I have been caught. I have heard it and believed it, that for a church you are supposed to obtain the pastor's permission. I have sat down and read the ncfirearmlaws.pdf publication again tonight as I have done many times before. It does not state anything about churches at all. I have edited the OP to state "if not posted".

    As with so many other things in life, even in religious organizations the ones at the top seem to be out of touch with the ones sitting in the pews. I had sure never heard such anti-gun talk while in church. That is why I was wondering what others take on it was.


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    hittman2 wrote:
    I now know it is time to get back to the religion of my roots due to this and many other issues with where I currently attend. My question to you all is am I the only one that was so naive as to not realize that almost every single religious sect out there refuse to acknowledge a person's right to protect themselves with a firearm and are generally actively fighting to make sure the government takes that right away?:shock:
    I find it a little unnerving that you're basing your spiritual faith on the issue of firearms and the church's stance on the issue instead of the tenants of the religion itself. To each his own though. I'm a Buddhist, but even we believe in shooting back when one shoots at us, it's stupid not to. Plus we have a Buddha who reached enlightenment after killing a guy in defense of hundreds of others. Unfortunately there are many Buddhists who forget that and need to be reminded from time to time. :?

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    I have OC'ed at two churches I have visited.

    The first church's pastor I met at a political meeting where I was OC'ing, carrying Bible and a pocket constitution. He invited me to his church. He had a few members say something to him about that visitor with a gun. He replied that it was good that I had one.

    The second church was a home church. After service I found out the pastor had a shotgun behind the pulpit. We've become good friends

    BTW, both of these congregations were predominately white (a few other races but no "blacks"). I am a "black man". Just thought that may give added perspective (black visitor OC'ing in white congregations without incident).

  9. #9
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    hittman2 wrote:
    I now know it is time to get back to the religion of my roots due to this and many other issues with where I currently attend. My question to you all is am I the only one that was so naive as to not realize that almost every single religious sect out there refuse to acknowledge a person's right to protect themselves with a firearm and are generally actively fighting to make sure the government takes that right away?:shock:
    Well some 501(c)3 organizations, that call themselves churches, have CEO's, that call themselves pastors, who "refuse to acknowledge a person's right to protect themselves with a firearm". However, they would be in opposition to Christ.

    Christ told the disciples that if they didn't have a sword to sell their garment and buy one and he was there with them.

    Later when Christ was arrested, He opened his mouth and men hit the ground. He knew He had that power in him yet He still told them to be armed.

    Now we don't really have swords now days. My grandmother has a sword in a frame on a wall from my Aunts time in Japan but we don't use them as weapons much.

    However, in that day swords were not antiques in a frame. They were the most deadly weapon of the time and the disciples, walking with Christ, carried them.

    See also Pastor Chuck Baldwin's writeup on being armed. (I can say I'm happy I voted for him in 08)

    It's worth the read but I highlighted some key points.

    “He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.” (Luke 22:36 KJV)
    Most of us are aware that the heroic actions of a brave woman at the New Life Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado a few days ago saved the lives of perhaps scores, or even hundreds, of people. However, her bravery would not have counted for much had she not been armed.
    On that fateful December Sunday, a man by the name of Matthew Murray entered the church armed to the teeth. According to press reports, he was armed with a semi-automatic rifle, two handguns, some smoke grenades, and more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition.
    By the time Murray arrived in the Colorado Springs church, he had already killed four people: two at a missionary training center miles away, and two in the church parking lot. He had wounded several others. No one realized it at the time, but the man was a serial killer in the midst of a rampage. He doubtless planned to kill as many people as he could, as there were thousands of people inside the church. Had there not been an armed citizen in the church house, the death toll would have been massive.
    According to church spokesmen, the congregation has over a dozen members who volunteered to serve as security personnel for the church. Jeanne Assam was one of those volunteers.
    A former police officer, Assam said, “I saw him [Murray] coming through the doors, and I took cover, and I waited for him to get closer. I came out of cover, I identified myself and engaged him and took him down.” Murray died in the exchange. Although Assam shot him several times with her 9mm pistol, the coroner’s office said that Murray actually succumbed to a self-inflicted gunshot wound. After being incapacitated by Assam’s gunfire, Murray apparently turned one of his weapons on himself.
    Chalk one up for the good guys, or in this case, good gals.
    Have you noticed how the media dropped the Colorado story as soon as it was discovered that a lawfully armed citizen ended the potential massacre by using her own handgun? Had the killer been successful in murdering scores of people, however, it would have been at the top of the news for weeks. As it is, the story is already buried in the dungeon section of the news, if it is in the news at all.
    One thing the national news media will always ignore is the practice of lawful self-defense. For example, most people are probably not aware of the fact that American citizens use a firearm to defend themselves more than 2.4 million times EVERY YEAR. That is more than 6,500 times EVERY DAY. This means that, each year, firearms are used 60 times more often to protect the lives of honest citizens than to take lives. Furthermore, of the 2.4 million self-defense cases, more than 192,000 are by women defending themselves against sexual assault. And in less than eight percent of those occasions is a shot actually fired. The vast majority of the time (92%), the mere presence of a firearm helps to avert a major crime from occurring. That is what Congressman Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD) concluded after extensive research. According to Rep. Bartlett, the number of defensive uses is four times the number of crimes reported committed with guns.
    John Lott, senior research scientist at the University of Maryland, agrees with Bartlett. His book “More Guns, Less Crime” documents the fact that–instead of being a cause of crime–firearms in the hands of private citizens are actually a major deterrent to crime.
    Another fact conveniently ignored by the major media is the connection between wanton killings and so-called “gun-free” zones. For an example of this, look no further than the Virginia Tech massacre. In spite of Virginia state laws that allow citizens to carry concealed weapons for self-defense, Virginia Tech forbade its students and faculty from carrying weapons for self-defense on campus. Had a student or faculty member been armed–as was Ms. Assam in the Colorado Springs attack–no doubt many, if not most, of the Virginia Tech victims would not have died. Obviously, bad guys do not pay any attention to “gun-free” zones, except to note that such zones create a free-killing environment.
    Is it any wonder that those states and cities with the most restrictive gun control laws tend to also be home to the highest crime rates? The old saying is still true. “When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.” There is another saying I like even better. “When guns are outlawed, I will be an outlaw.”
    Even our Lord understood and validated the right of every person to arm themselves for personal self-defense. He said, “He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.” (Luke 22:36 KJV) The old Roman sword was the First Century equivalent of a modern handgun. It was the most practical and convenient form of self-defense available at that time. Also, please note that at least two of Jesus’ disciples (one of whom was Simon Peter) were in the habit of carrying their own personal swords, and Jesus never rebuked them. (See Luke 22:38.)
    Jesus also acknowledged, “When a strong man ARMED [emphasis added] keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace.” (Luke 11:21)
    Furthermore, the Apostle Paul said, emphatically, “But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” (I Tim. 5:8) Does “not providing for his own” include not providing protection? Of course it does.
    The right and, yes, obligation of personal self-defense is entrenched in both Christian and American tradition. People who would deny citizens the right to arm themselves are either naÔvely ignorant or deliberately duplicitous. As Robert Heinlein said, “An armed society is a polite society.”
    America’s Founding Fathers agreed with Heinlein. Thomas Jefferson said, “No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.” He also said, “Laws that forbid the carrying of arms . . . disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes . . . Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.”
    Samuel Adams said, “[T]he said Constitution [shall] be never construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press, or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms.”
    James Madison said, “To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people always possess arms.”
    Thomas Paine said, “[A]rms discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property . . . Horrid mischief would ensue were the law-abiding deprived of the use of them.”
    George Washington called the private collections of arms “the people’s liberty’s teeth.”
    America must always preserve the right to keep and bear arms. To do any less is to invite oppression and tyranny, not to mention acts of violence.
    Some years back, Alan Rice of the Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership (JPFO) wrote, “Since 1900 at least seven major genocides have occurred resulting in the murder of 50-60 million people:
    *Ottoman Turkey, 1915-17; 1-1.5 million Armenians murdered; *Soviet Union, 1929-53; 20 million anti-Communists and anti-Stalinists murdered; *Nazi Germany & Occupied Europe, 1933-45; 13 million Jews, Gypsies, and Anti-Nazi murdered; *China, 1949-52, 1957-60 & 1966-1976; 20 million anti-Communists murdered; *Guatemala, 1960-1981; 100,000 Mayan Indians murdered; *Uganda, 1971-1979; 300,000 Christians and Political Rivals of Idi Amin murdered; *Cambodia, 1975-1979; 1 million murdered.”
    Rice continued to say, “In all seven of the genocides summarized above, gun control laws were in force before the genocide occurred, in some cases decades before. In five of the seven genocides, the lethal law, the gun control law was in force before the genocide regime took power.”
    Rice also said, “Gun control laws are usually enacted during a crisis or a perceived crisis.” He then said, “Government officials, not hate groups or common criminals, were responsible for these seven genocides. In most of these cases the murder victims outnumbered their murderers; yet they were powerless to defend themselves because they were disarmed.”
    Do the math yourself. Absent an armed citizen, 32 innocent people lost their lives at Virginia Tech, while the presence of 1 armed citizen resulted in 2 innocent deaths in Colorado Springs. Furthermore, the presence of over 200 million firearms in the possession of the American people has done more to keep America free than any other human element–bar none!
    Therefore, to help keep your family safe and your country free, go buy a gun.

  10. #10
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    see also Chuck Baldwin's article on Romans 13 (what has become known as "Obey the law of the land scriptures)

    http://www.chuckbaldwinlive.com/c200..._20090227.html

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    Thanks again for everyone's replies. It is assuring to see that I am not the only one who thought it odd that the top level "administrators" took such a hard stance when it had never been brought up in the local congregation.

    Just to clear up one point though, as stated in the OP my research had nothing to do with gun control, it is just something that I ran across and was very intrigued by. I am sure that many of you have had issues with "whose church do we go to" while being married. My research was based on now having 2 young children and where we go to church and what beliefs we follow suddenly take on a new meaning and far more importance for me / for them than it used to.

    I have purposely stayed away from mentioning what issues, beliefs, etc I was researching because not only is it way off topic but, well, it can be touchy and set off feuds which is the last thing I want to happen. I will promise though that gun control was a "stumble upon" not a deciding factor I was researching.

    All in all, I am very pleased to hear that so many of you have had such positive experiences and thank you for the very helpful and informative replies!


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    Well I don't go to a church because I'm Jewish but many of the Jewish congregations in the area have a police officer posted outside in his car during services because of numerous threats and vandalism over the years. The more liberal congregations are very political and against gun rights(but they appreciate an armed officer outside during services!!!! Arrrggh!) The more conservative and Orthodox congregations are more pro gun ownership and carry. We Orthodox live in reality!

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