Should Churches Have the Option to Allow On Premise Concealed Carry?

A small country church through the trees

     In a world of increasing domestic terrorism, laws are changing across the nation to allow law abiding citizens to  protect themselves in public places that before were exempt from concealed carry law protections.

As of September 2017 churches in Texas have the option to allow their parishioners to carry concealed on church property.  Churches can arm members of their own congregation, whereas before they had to hire security firms under SB 2065. These armed worshippers absolutely must be volunteers and CANNOT wear any type of badges or clothing stating they are ‘security’.

This was decided 2 months before the horrific mass shooting that occurred in Sutherland Springs, Texas. After our president called this act a “mental health problem at the highest level” and not “a guns situation,” one can only hope to be allowed to legally carry concealed at church for safety and peace of mind.

According to Texas statute, whether one can legally conceal carry in a place of religious worship is completely up to the particular church. Surprising, right? Well, the statute has so many grey areas that they just made it up the church to decide! In fact, this is the case in most states across the nation.

If the building posts Section 30.06 and 30.07 signs at each entrance, you may not conceal carry, so be aware of the signage at entrances and never assume your right to conceal carry in a place of religious worship. If no signage is posted at the entrance, it is your responsibility to ask the appropriate individual regarding the gun policies.

Not everyone agrees that this decision should be up to the church, however giving that decision to the state may be more trouble than its worth. Take the great state of Louisiana as an example. They decided to settle the issue by allowing concealed carriers to carry in church with church approval so long as they add another 8 hours of classwork to their certification training. Failing to do so can get you into some trouble with the law.

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