(SPRINGFIELD, Mo.--11/06/17) On the heels of the deadly shooting at a Texas church Sunday morning, local congregations are wondering how best to keep their members safe.
For some churches, that means assembling security teams made up of their own members as well as the local police department.
"It’s a burden that we carry and when these events happen it just brings that burden back to life and reminds of the seriousness that we’re in as a church family," explains First Baptist Springfield's Pastor Michael Oveton,.
Overton says in this day and age, having security measures in place is a necessary precaution/
"Every church must think through a security plan to have volunteers in place to least be alert in watching for something to happen, to have plans in place for the church as to what to do if there’s an active shooter in place."
Overton says its also important to be welcoming to people from all walks of life.
"We want be seen as people with the doors to be open to the church for anyone to come."
Overton adds that unfortunately introduces an element of the unknown
"When these tragedies happen it always causes us to rethink every week what we’re doing? What we doing to keep people safe?"
Churches in this area have security measures in place but were reluctant to talk. However overton wants his churchgoers to know that law enforcement is there.
"So every Sunday we have two Springfield Police Officers on site to watch, to be alert to keep us safe."
Church goers say what happened in Texas made them want to be more vigilant.
Julie Ipock is a church member at the First Baptist in Springfield. She tells FOX5," It’s more and more important every single day to do that and just to be aware of your surroundings, be aware of what’s going on at all times and just trying to prevent as much as we can."
Overton also relies on the eyes of parishioners to speak up if something looks out of place.