II – Aware

Church Security Book Review: A Gentle Response

With the title taken from Proverbs 15:1, “A gentle response defuses anger, but a sharp tongue kindles a temper-fire,” the book A Gentle Response: Conflict De-Escalation With A Ministry Mindset is written to guide staff and volunteers of all faiths and houses of worship in proven ways to defuse tense and potentially dangerous situations. Its author, John Riley, is an Army veteran, retired police officer, consultant, trainer, and founder/president of Gentle Response, a consulting company specializing in very dynamic, realistic conflict de-escalation training seminars which are specifically designed to help students develop stress inoculation, muscle memory, self confidence, and confidence in colleagues.

[ Read the SemperVerus article, Gentle Response De-Escalation Training for Church Security Teams ]

The book is filled with practical insight and examples by the author, gleaned from 20 years of road patrol experience, observations, and training as a certified crisis intervention specialist through the National Anger Management Association of what can be said and done by law enforcement officers to more effectively and successfully de-escalate a situation to ensure that everyone goes home safe. While it’s written to church security team members, it’s principles can be equally applied to individuals as part of your personal self-defense toolbox.

[ Read the SemperVerus article, A Prayer for Church Security Team Members ]

The following are highlighted quotes from the 90-page book:

Directory: Informative Free Email Newsletters From a Variety of Sources

Church Security: Church Crisis Response Checklist

Does your congregation know what to do in the first few hours and days after a tragedy?

[ Read the SemperVerus article, A Prayer for Church Security Team Members ]

Research studied by the ministry Spiritual First Aid shows that most churches, organizations, and communities are not well prepared for mass traumas.

That’s why it has now published the complimentary evidence-based crisis response tool, Trauma-Informed Church Crisis Response: A Field Guide for the First 72 Hours. It’s an outline of the critical stages following a crisis, providing a comprehensive list of practical actions your congregation can take to support those impacted by a major event, such as a mass killing or natural disaster.

[ Read the SemperVerus article, A Directory of Medical Kit Resources ]

Here are a few excerpts:

Self-Defense and Church Security: Make Scanning Your Priority

The article, Priority of Scan – An Officer Survival Necessity by Calibre Press instructor Lt. Kelly DeVoll (ret.) is written for the readership of professional police officers. But it also has much bearing for individual self-defense and church security situational awareness. Here are the major points adapted for civilian practice:

•   In keeping with Col. Jeff Cooper’s observational “Color Code,” we must always avoid complacency (the color “white” in the Code) when in public; nothing should be considered mindless routine. Instead, cultivate a mindful routine. [The Color Code can also be described using adjectives: White = Complacent; Yellow = Observant; Orange = Hazard; Red = Action.]

[ Read the SemperVerus article, Chart: The Spectrum of Potential Threat Personas in Self-Defense and Church Security ]

•   When you’re interacting with a person, that person, potentially, is “one of the most dangerous creatures on earth.” You must visualize and assess any means of attack that person could use against you. To that end, develop this priority of scan sequence and use it continuously: hands, waist, face, head-to-toe.