All posts from “safety”

Safety Awareness: Building the Right Team

April 24, 2014 8:00 AM

With the "Youth Ministry in America" survey results as a starting point, we continue our roundtable discussion. Today we discuss the all-important ministry issue of safety awareness. If you missed the last three weeks' blog posts on the top...

Safety Training: It's More Than a Manual

April 17, 2014 8:00 AM

With the "Youth Ministry in America" survey results as a starting point, we continue our roundtable discussion. Today we discuss the important—and sometimes overlooked—issue of safety training in churches. (If you missed the last two blog posts on the top...

Keep Your Church Safe

March 25, 2014 8:00 AM

In years gone by, church doors stayed open round the clock. Lawsuits, embezzlement, and church shootings were things that happened to others. Today's headlines, however, tell us that crime has taken up residence even in our midst. Potential Problem Areas...

A Tragic Case of Arson at a Maryland Church

December 23, 2013 8:00 AM

A man previously given food and clothing by St. Paul's by the Sea Episcopal Church in Maryland again walked through the church's doors on Thanksgiving Day while volunteers prepared a meal. Except this time, John Sterner was completely engulfed...

Let's Change This Statistic

December 5, 2013 8:00 AM

What are you doing to prevent child sex abuse at your church? Learn more here....

Four Things to Consider Before Starting a Food Pantry

December 3, 2013 12:15 PM

Whether it's an encounter with a homeless person begging for food, a stint volunteering at a soup kitchen, participation in a canned food drive, or just watching a commercial about children starving in a third-world country, most people have...

How Safe is Your Church's Youth Ministry?

October 7, 2013 8:00 AM

As a parent, I was particularly struck by this passage from Richard Hammar's Essential Guide to Youth Ministry Safety: Middle school- to high school-aged students are inexperienced and vulnerable when it comes to physical and emotional boundaries. This can...

Extra Precautions to Protect Boys at Your Church

September 17, 2013 8:00 AM

Though victimized slightly less often than girls, boys are still a target for sex abuse. In addition to creating a culture of protection for all children, church leaders should also work to create a safe environment for boys to...

Free Webinar: Guns at Church and Church Security

August 8, 2013 8:00 AM

If a shooting occurs at our church, are we liable? How should we form a church security team? Is it OK for church members with permits to bring their guns to church? These questions may seem odd for church leaders...

Do Religions Produce More Child Sex Abusers?

August 1, 2013 8:00 AM

A writer for the "Friendly Athiest" channel on Patheos recently asked whether religions produce "more than their fair share" of child sex abusers. The basis of his question, and his answer, which was yes, is the ongoing abuse scandals...

Are You Preventing Sexual Abuse?

July 16, 2013 8:00 AM

What are you doing to prevent child sex abuse at your church? Learn more here....

5 Ways to Create a Culture of Child Protection at Your Church

June 25, 2013 8:00 AM

With summer in full swing, and many regular volunteers out on vacation, it's tempting to relax the rules a bit in order to keep your children's ministry volunteer staff up to capacity. However, your church still has first-time and regular...

White House to Churches: Run, Hide, or Fight an Active Shooter

June 20, 2013 2:25 PM

Our sister site ChristianityToday.com's "Gleanings" gives a quick recap today of the White House's first-ever emergency operating plan for houses of worship. The free plan, created by six government agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security and FEMA, covers how...

Responding to Storm-Related Disasters

May 21, 2013 8:53 AM

On Monday, a 2-mile-wide tornado touched down outside of Oklahoma City, destroying homes, cars, and buildings. Governor Mary Fallin declared an emergency for 16 Oklahoma counties that suffered severe storms and floods. This tornado was just a part of...

Why Your Church Needs a Plan for Allergic Reactions

April 30, 2013 8:00 AM

I spent my college summers working as a camp counselor at my church. It was a day camp, and a rather large one—we had kids who were there every single week for the entire summer. My twentysomething co-counselors and I...

Stabbing Spree at New Mexico Church

April 29, 2013 3:49 PM

A 24-year-old man went on a stabbing spree during the closing moments of a Catholic parish's morning mass Sunday in Albuquerque, N.M., NBC News reports. The suspect leapt over pews and lunged at people. Four people went to the hospital...

Three Risks Keeping Church Leaders Up at Night

April 23, 2013 8:00 AM

Last month, Frank Sommerville, CPA, JD, visited Christianity Today and spent time with our team. Frank is one of our Editorial Advisors and he spent time with us discussing some of the top risks churches face each day. A...

Don't Burn Your Church Down

April 16, 2013 4:47 PM

Two weeks ago, Christian blogger Matthew Paul Turner posted this video of an Easter morning mishap in which the on-stage "tomb" at a church caught on fire while the singer continued his Easter solo. While this video brought out laughter...

Boston Marathon Explosions at Finish Line

April 15, 2013 3:43 PM

Today at the Boston Marathon, two bombs exploded near the finish line, the mile that was devoted to the victims of Newton, Connecticut. The bombs exploded near the viewing stand, and reports of casualties are still coming in. We...

Lessons from a Church Sexual Abuse Scandal

February 27, 2013 9:16 AM

A high-profile case involving the rape of a 13-year-old girl inside a Tulsa, Oklahoma, megachurch and other charges of abuse provides a sobering reminder about the steps churches must take to prevent sexual abuse—and a reminder for leaders to...

2012: "A Bad Year for Violence" at Churches

February 5, 2013 12:10 PM

Last month, church security expert Carl Chinn updated his statistics on violent incidents at churches and faith-based organizations. He began tracking this information in 1999 by learning of incidents reported by news agencies, which he then independently researches and...

The Top 10 Church Management Articles of 2012

December 27, 2012 8:00 AM

The church office is a busy place, as shown in this year’s ten most popular articles on ManagingYourChurch.com. These ten alone demonstrate that many church leaders are working hard to count contributions, show employees their appreciation, conduct board meetings,...

Outfit Your Church for Outreach

December 20, 2012 8:00 AM

As Christmas approaches, many churches are directing their attention toward local, national, and international outreach efforts. Christianity Today and Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company recently conducted the joint national Outlook for Outreach study, collecting responses from 1,486 church leaders and volunteers...

How Churches Serve Their Communities

December 11, 2012 8:00 AM

Where would Americans be if churches didn’t make outreach a priority? Many would feel the pain of unmet needs for basics such as food and clothing, not to mention a slow-down in disaster recovery efforts. For many hardest hit by...

Responding to Hurricane Sandy: Part 2

November 5, 2012 8:00 AM

This is the second of two posts on responding to Hurricane Sandy and similar disasters. You can read Part 1 (covering church closure response, shelters, preparing relief workers, and more) here. As of November 1, estimates of the total...

Responding to Hurricane Sandy: Part 1

November 2, 2012 8:00 AM

According to New Jersey news source NJ.com, residents of Rockaway, New Jersey “might have wanted to close their eyes as they passed First Presbyterian Church Tuesday. “Hurricane Sandy ripped the steeple off the roof, flipped it and stuck it...

When a Sex Offender Wants to Attend Church

October 18, 2012 8:00 AM

How would your congregation react if they knew a convicted sex offender was worshipping among them each Sunday morning? This controversial question is something congregations across the country are currently asking themselves. Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Experts recommend...

Can We Send Banned Cribs Out of the Country?

September 27, 2012 8:00 AM

Q: I am a children’s pastor. We have replaced all of our cribs, in light of the new regulations banning certain ones from being used, sold, or donated in this country. We have a missionary we support in South...

Building a Culture of Risk Management

September 25, 2012 8:00 AM

Now more than ever before, church leaders must recognize the importance of risk management as an inherent part of organizational oversight and leadership. But what does proper risk management look like, and whose responsibility is it? Many boards assume that...

Drafting a Conditional Agreement for a Sex Offender

August 23, 2012 8:00 AM

When church leaders learn a sex offender is in their midst, their response typically is one of the following three: Do nothing. They just don’t know what to do. Total exclusion. They choose a blanket policy prohibiting a registered offender...

Defending Your Church from a Dangerous Person

August 9, 2012 8:00 AM

A shooting at a Sikh temple in suburban Milwaukee this past Sunday morning reminds us that dangerous people can, and sometimes do, walk into places of worship in the U.S. Six people were killed and three injured after a suspect...

Protecting Ourselves from Sex Offenders

August 7, 2012 8:00 AM

Sex offenders are feared and despised in today’s world. They are seen as monsters who, at any moment, might pounce upon their unsuspecting prey, especially children. The general perception is that sex offenders are more dangerous than other criminals....

Report: Penn State Sex Abuse Allegations Arose in 1998

July 12, 2012 3:13 PM

Joe Paterno and other key Penn State officials knew about sex abuse allegations as early as 1998, but actively hushed concerns in fear of repercussions, according to a special investigative team’s report released today. The sweeping independent report notes that...

Setting Boundaries for Sex Offenders to Attend Church

July 12, 2012 8:00 AM

Set Free Christian Fellowship in Medford, Oregon, recently received a letter from its insurance provider that outlines requirements for allowing known sex offenders to attend the church. Stipulations include fully disclosing the identity of sex offenders to the 100-member congregation,...

Should Our Church Start a Food Pantry?

May 29, 2012 8:00 AM

For a church that feels compelled or called to do its part to address hunger in its community, establishing a food pantry might be an effective way to make a difference. Before launching a food pantry ministry though, here are...

ManagingYourChurch.com Honored by Press Association

May 15, 2012 2:41 PM

Today's post is a little different than the norm because we have some good news to share. ManagingYourChurch.com received a top honor Friday from the Evangelical Press Association during the organization's 2012 conference. The site received the Award of Excellence--the...

When Benevolence Ministry Becomes Risky

April 23, 2012 8:00 AM

Around lunchtime on a Friday, a man entered a Boston-area church and soon left with the church secretary’s purse, according to a local news station. The man claimed he needed money to support his five children. After the secretary...

Free Webinar: Child Abuse Reporting in the Aftermath of Penn State

April 17, 2012 8:00 AM

Allegations of child molestation at Penn State University stunned the nation last fall. Even as the investigation continues, church leaders can learn from the tough lessons of this case, including recognizing abuse, the duties to report suspected cases of abuse,...

Protecting Kids at Church

April 10, 2012 8:00 AM

April is Child Abuse Prevention month. Church should be the safest place on earth, where kids can learn and grow in their faith. Sadly, many children have experienced abuse—physical, emotional, and sexual—at the hands of people they trusted at...

Churchgoers Restrain Gunman During Sunday Service

March 26, 2012 11:22 AM

A man armed with a shotgun entered worship services Sunday at a church in South Carolina. Quick—and courageous—action by attenders helped prevent a shooting. The Huffington Post reports churchgoers watched through the church's windows as the 38-year-old assailant approached the...

Before You Share Your Space

January 31, 2012 3:09 PM

When a church allows outside groups to use its space, it invites opportunity and risk in too. By sharing your space, you introduce new people to your facility—people who might not otherwise come through your doors. At the same...

The Top 10 Church Management Articles of 2011

December 13, 2011 8:00 AM

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I’m a sucker for lists. And the end of a calendar year always brings opportunities to reflect on the top stories and headlines from the year that was. So it’s...

Safely Depositing Weekly Collections

November 10, 2011 8:00 AM

A church in Centralia, Washington, lost nearly $7,000 from its weekly collections recently when a staff member accidentally left the bag containing the collected funds on top of her car and headed to the bank. Fortunately, a man driving...

Protecting the Elderly from Abuse

October 25, 2011 8:00 AM

Many churches create child abuse protection plans to keep kids safe from abuse. Older adults, especially those who are housebound and unable to fully care for themselves, deserve similar protection, too. Seniors who have family members or caretakers that...

New Crib Regulations Affect Churches

October 6, 2011 8:00 AM

New federal regulations for cribs could lead to substantial penalties and civil lawsuits that may implicate not only your church, but also your church board. It's important your church understands these new regulations and follows them closely to avoid creating...

Nine Tips for Keeping Church Football Games Safe

September 27, 2011 8:00 AM

Football season is underway, and many churches are hosting flag football and touch football events for their youth ministries. In full-contact football, players wear extensive padding and safety equipment. Virtually no protective gear is used for flag or touch...

Seattle Hayride Crash Injures Youth Group, Leaders

September 15, 2011 8:00 AM

A church-sponsored hayride turned dangerous in July when a trailer carrying a Seattle area youth group flipped on a steep hill. According to a local news source, the trailer jackknifed on a packed gravel road, seriously injuring three adult...

When Someone Disrupts the Church Service

August 22, 2011 8:00 AM

The feature article this week on ChurchLawAndTax.com, a sister site of ours, looks at the delicate balance between ministry and safety. In "Dealing with Dangerous People," we go deeper into how church staff and lay leaders should approach an...

Keeping Kids Safe at Camp

July 26, 2011 8:00 AM

Sometimes our best ministry activities attract the wrong people. Church summer camp, for instance, is often the highlight of a church’s summer ministry. Sadly, sex offenders know this too. According to John McLaughlin, an officer with the police department...

Are Churches an Easy Target for Vandalism and Burglary?

June 28, 2011 8:00 AM

A church business manager told me that two times in the past couple years his church was vandalized. He was grateful the church’s insurance covered most of the cost, but for the most recent case, his church won’t be...

How to Manage Risk at Church

June 9, 2011 8:00 AM

David Middlebrook, editorial advisor for ChurchLawAndTax.com and ChurchSafety.com’s “Ask the Expert,” has developed an easy way to understand and develop a risk management plan. Each letter of the word “risk” stands for a step in the process: R –...

Fire Prep for Your Church

June 8, 2011 2:19 PM

During the past week, the states of Texas and Arizona faced rapidly spreading wildfires. In Arizona, firefighters now battle the state’s third-largest wildfire ever after attempts to contain it this past weekend failed, according to the Associated Press. The unpredictability...

Church Bus Driver Arrested on Sex Abuse Charge

May 10, 2011 8:00 AM

A church bus driver in southern Illinois was arrested and charged last week with sexually abusing a child. According to the local newspaper, "the arrest came after a Wayne County Grand Jury returned an indictment against him." The driver,...

Why Churches Should Take the Lead Preventing Abuse

April 25, 2011 8:00 AM

Editor's Note: April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. As the month draws to a close, here's a piece from Marian Liautaud regarding the need for churches to take the lead on child abuse prevention for the good of...

Screening and Selecting Children's Workers at Church

April 7, 2011 8:00 AM

Editor's Note: April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. For churches, one of the first measures that can make a difference for their children and youth is the proper screening and selection of the paid staff and volunteers who...

Confronting Violence at Church

March 22, 2011 8:00 AM

The current issue of Leadership Journal revisits the fatal shooting of Pastor Fred Winters as he preached one Sunday morning at First Baptist Church in Maryville, Illinois. The piece recounts—in chilling detail—his final moments on March 8, 2009, as...

Concealed Weapons in Church

March 1, 2011 8:00 AM

In 2010, the state of Georgia enacted a law prohibiting a person with a concealed weapons permit to carry a concealed weapon into a place of worship. A lawsuit was filed challenging the constitutionality of the law. Hear what the...

Food Safety for Church Holiday Meals

November 25, 2010 8:00 AM

If your church is planning a Thanksgiving or Christmas meal, don't let bad food spoil a good time—learn how to safely prepare and store foods by reading the article "Simple Tips for Food Safety at Church Potlucks" and the...

30% Discount on Church Law, Tax, and Finance Resources

October 18, 2010 8:00 AM

Our friends at the National Association for Church Business Administration have designated Thursday, October 21, as "National Church Administration Day." As NACBA explains it on its website: "The idea behind National Church Administration Day is for seasoned church leaders...

ChurchSafety.com’s Top 10 Training Resources

August 31, 2010 8:00 AM

ChurchSafety.com provides expert guidance and risk management information on a broad range of safety topics. We’ve compiled the Top 10 most-downloaded resources from ChurchSafety.com during the past year. Find out what other church leaders have read and used to...

The Your Church Blog's Top 10 Posts from Its First Year

August 26, 2010 8:00 AM

I love milestones. And I'm a sucker for top 10 lists (thank you very much, David Letterman). Since today is August 26, it means the TheYourChurchBlog.com turns 1. Naturally, I went back and looked at our 10 most popular posts...

People You Don't Want in Your Ministry

August 24, 2010 8:00 AM

Like a triple espresso on an empty stomach, some news stories make my hands shake. In our paper yesterday, I read about a Boy Scout camp director recently arrested for possession of child pornography. The FBI raided the camp...

Food Safety at Church Potlucks

August 10, 2010 8:00 AM

Bring out the food, and the fellowship is close behind. Church dinners offer an excellent opportunity to bring the community together. Poor food preparation can spoil a good time, though, so use the following precautions before your next church...

Alleged Rape Underscores Church Office Security Needs

June 30, 2010 8:00 AM

Editor's Note: A man hired to handle odd jobs at an Oklahoma City church was arrested last week and charged with raping a church employee. The man's background included two prior convictions for burglary, and two prior violations of protective...

Set an Example with Copyright Law

June 29, 2010 8:00 AM

Editor's Note: This article provides a helpful overview. For a complete understanding of copyright law for churches, check out the fully updated and redesigned Essential Guide to Copyright Law for Churches by Richard Hammar, which is now available to...

Arkansas Floods Provide a Sober Reminder about Safety Preparation

June 11, 2010 12:00 PM

Editor's Note: With floods hitting a campground in Arkansas today, killing at least 20 people and leaving dozens of others missing, we're pointing to two resources that church leaders can use to prepare for upcoming camps this summer. The...

Creating a Safe Outreach Ministry

May 27, 2010 8:00 AM

My last year of college, I had the privilege of overseeing 20-plus weekly outreach ministries to the greater Chicago area. Our programs included a sports ministry, refugee outreach, hospital visitation, tutoring, street evangelism, and soup kitchen ministry. I witnessed...

Hosting Large Events at Your Church

May 20, 2010 8:00 AM

Whenever churches open their doors to the public they expose themselves to both opportunity and risk. A well-run event maximizes the opportunity and takes precautions against the risk. Use these simple tips from ChurchSafety.com the next time your church...

Safe and Legal Fundraising

May 13, 2010 8:00 AM

Before you launch your next fundraising effort, be sure to consider some aspects that may be putting your church and your members at risk. Use the simple tips below as a checklist for your next fundraiser. Physical Safety Outside...

Accidents Caused by Teenage Drivers

May 6, 2010 9:00 AM

Follow Richard on YouTube.com: http://www.youtube.com/richardrhammar For more information on keeping the youth in your church safe, visit the "Youth" section of ChurchSafety.com. You'll find topics on High Risk Student Activities, Safe Mentoring Relationships, and more....

Don't Forget the Check

May 4, 2010 8:00 AM

The buzz surrounding electronic giving options continues to grow as online donation capabilities improve and text-messaging campaigns take hold. The American Red Cross, for instance, says it raised $35 million within 48 hours of the January earthquake in Haiti,...

Is Porn a Problem in Your Church Office?

April 27, 2010 8:00 AM

An eye-opening national headline emerged last week, providing a timely sneak peek into our upcoming issue of Your Church magazine. The inspector general for the Securities and Exchange Commission--the organization tasked with enforcing the laws and regulations that govern...

Create an Earth-Safe Church

April 22, 2010 8:00 AM

Going "green" is a popular expression in today's eco-minded culture. Ministries are not exempt from environmental responsibility. In fact, green practices can be a testament to good stewardship and an outreach opportunity. Under Construction Go with the flow. Incorporate...

Create a Child Abuse Response Plan

April 14, 2010 8:00 AM

(Editor’s Note: April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. We're digging deeper into the issue of "Reporting Child Abuse" with Richard Hammar during a special one-hour live webinar on April 14. Don’t miss out on this important learning opportunity for...

Dealing with Sex Offenders Who Attend Church

April 13, 2010 8:30 AM

(Editor’s note: Since this post first published, Christianity Today International completed "Sex Offenders in the Church," a comprehensive research project exploring the attitudes and beliefs among church leaders regarding integrating sex offenders into the faith community.) Question posted through "Ask...

How Finance, Sexual Wrongdoings Challenged One Church

March 11, 2010 8:00 AM

My lawyer said, "Just follow my lead and answer the questions he asks, and everything will be okay." I clung to his advice as I entered the smartly decorated boardroom lined with towering bookshelves. The first thing I noticed...

Sex Offenders in the Church

December 10, 2009 10:00 AM

Because our team produces Reducing the Risk, a comprehensive training program that churches use with staff and volunteers to minimize the risks of child abuse in their ministries, we pay a great deal of attention to the issue of sex...

Guard Against Copper Thieves

November 12, 2009 3:50 PM

Copper remains a popular target for thieves because of the metal’s potential re-sale value. Thieves steal anything containing copper in order to turn a quick profit. Air conditioning units, gutters, electrical wiring, pipes—all of these items are ripe for...

Top 5 Reasons Churches Wind Up in Court

November 4, 2009 9:40 AM

For many years, I've closely reviewed litigation involving churches to identify patterns that pastors and leaders can use to assess their own risks and potential vulnerabilities. In 2008, the following five types of cases brought churches to court more...

Simple Tips to Prepare for a Pandemic

November 2, 2009 8:30 AM

As a ministry leader, you may be wondering what you can do to keep your congregation healthy. Here are some important steps you can take to reduce the spread of the flu within your own faith community. Read through...

Church Shootings in the Spotlight

October 5, 2009 3:10 PM

Last week’s Washington Post article, “Sense of Sanctuary Lost as Church Attacks Spike,” underscores the unfortunate attention that church shootings now draw from national media and those outside of ministry. The Post’s piece recounts several recent, high-profile shooting incidents, including...

Should Your Church Hire a Sex Offender?

September 30, 2009 2:28 PM

A church in Louisville, Kentucky, generated local and national media attention earlier this month, not because it allowed a convicted sex offender to attend its services, but because the church pastor decided to hire and ordain one. WHAS-TV, a...