Churches and safety

In today's current climate, is it appropriate for a pastor and congregational leaders to be vocal supporters of the NRA, host trainings for current/potential gun owners on church property, and post signs stating that the church property is protected by armed security? Should we be portraying our church to our community as a "Pro-Gun Church" and isolating members/visitors that disagree politically? How can this be addressed without hurting anyone's feelings? Thanks!

These are matters that are best addressed at the congregational level. Your congregation might be in a rural setting where there is a long-established culture of hunting; it might be in an urban setting where there is a high crime rate.

As churches and schools react to the shootings that have taken place across our country recently, they are interested in the safety of their constituents. How to keep people safe and vigilant is where discussions and plans can vary.

All I can say in general about your questions is that congregations will want to apply their regular decision-making policies and procedures to this matter. They will want to see if any proposed action aligns with the mission of their congregation (their mission statement). They will seek input from congregational members—especially those who are not part of the decision-making process. They will be interested in listening to and addressing the concerns of those individuals whose opinions did not prevail. They will want to know if any proposed actions could benefit from legal review. These are some thoughts that congregations regularly keep in mind as they attend to their business matters and which can be applied to your situation.