A Sign Of The Times

(Written September 11, 2015)
I attend one of the  eight named Presbyterian Churches in Dillon County, one that was organized in 1871 when many of the members of Little Pee Dee Presbyterian Church (no longer active) decided the long wagon/buggy trip there from the upper part of the county was a problem thus Kentyre came into being.  At its peak, there were 135 members in attendance back during the agrarian era.  Today the active congregation averages around 12, mostly retirees, about one half of the official membership.  But we manage; we have regular services and a ‘full time” ordained minister with whom we share with another church.
We have one adult Sunday school class plus a class for the one first grader who attends so officially, we actually have two classes.  We have a modern church facility plus a sanctuary that will seat 200+ so there is room for you. Recently before morning worship the minister was handed a bulletin which included information about security details that churches might consider in light of recent violent acts (killings) that have occurred in our news area.  Remember Charleston?
Of course the obvious security details are already followed one being that once services begin, doors are locked.  That in itself is chilling to those who until recently were oblivious to such needs since who ever thought of anyone violating the sanctity of a church much less with an act of unspeakable violence.  But such is upon us unfortunately. Many in our age group grew up in homes whose doors were never locked in fact, in one case, there were no keys available.  But that sadly was yesterday at a time of old fashioned innocence.
But one question was raised when a member asked should a threatening uninvited invader come in to the sanctuary, should we assume he had come for nefarious purposes or should we first try to reason with the one holding the firearm or as Presbyterians are ordinarily likely to do, discuss this with him decently and in order while reminding him  of his legal rights and inquiring if he had any bad boyhood experiences we might discuss  which had brought about this sinful act?
Then should he ignore the entreaties and actually fire off a round, would it be proper for a qualified armed member to retaliate accordingly with deadly force?  Or united, maybe all rush the misdirected one hoping to overcome him before he did the same to the members of the congregation.
And another question: who would actually be able and indeed willing to carry out such an action even  if absolutely necessary?  And further, in such an event, should preaching services still be held and should Sunday school classes still meet?
Should we send flowers?
Bill Lee
PO Box 128
Hamer, SC 29547

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