Churches Developing Tactical Response Capability

Churches have been coming under attack for many years from many quarters. Now well armed individuals, often with a grievance or just hatred for Christianity have been literally invading churches to kill the worshippers within:

Killer’s rant filled with profanity, hate
By The Denver Post

Article Last Updated: 12/11/2007 09:24:12 AM MST

A message posted between the Youth With a Mission shooting in Arvada on Sunday, Dec. 9 and the New Life Church shooting in Colorado Springs is believed to be Matthew Murray’s last posting. It contains language which many may find objectionable:

“You christians brought this on yourselves!”

—————————————————————————–

“I’m coming for EVERYONE soon and I WILL be armed to the @#%$ teeth and I WILL shoot to kill. ….God, I can’t wait till I can kill you people. Feel no remorse, no sense of shame, I don’t care if I live or die in the shoot-out. All I want to do is kill and injure as many of you … as I can especially Christians who are to blame for most of the problems in the world.

Well all you people out there can just kiss my ass and die. From now on I don’t give a @#%$ about what all you muthaf#*kers have to say, unless I respect you which is highly unlikely, but for those of you who do happen to know me and know that I respect you, may peace be with you and don’t be in my line of fire, for the rest of you, you all better @#%$ hide in your houses because I’m coming for EVERYONE soon, and I WILL be armed to the @#%$ teeth, and I WILL shoot to kill and I WILL @#%$ KILL EVERYTHING! No I am not crazy, crazy is just a word, to me it has no meaning, everyone is different, but most of you @#%$ heads out there in society, going to your everyday @#%$ jobs and doing your everyday routine shitty things, I say @#%$ you and die, if you got a problem with my thoughts, come to me and I’ll kill you, because……..God damnit, DEAD PEOPLE DON’T ARGUE! My belief is that if I say something, it goes. I am the law. If you don’t like it, you die. If I don’t like you or I don’t like what you want me to do, then you die. If I do something incorrect, oh @#%$ well, you die. Dead people can’t do many things, like argue, whine, @#%$, complain, name, rat out, criticize, or even @#%$ talk. So that’s the only way to solve arguments with all you fuckheads out there, I just kill. God I can’t wait till I can kill you people, I’ll just go to some downtown area in some big city and blow up and shoot everything I can.

You break my back but you won’t break me…..all is black but I still see…shut me down, knock me to the floor…..shoot me up, @#%$ me like a whore….trapped under ice, comfortably cold, I’ve gone as low as you can go….. feel no remorse, no sorrow or shame……time’s gonna wash away all pain I made a God out of blood not superiority I killed the king of deceit and now I sleep in anarchy…”

We pieced together the following account of what happened next from various websites:

In Denver, a woman, fresh from a three day fast, in which she prayed to God for guidance in choosing a career path, was thrown right into the path of this mad-dog killer:

Amid deafening cracks of gunfire, smoke-spewing canisters and the flight of thousands of New Life Church members, Jeanne Assam said she suddenly saw the hallways clear and a gunman come through the door.

“I took cover. I identified myself. I engaged him. I took him down,” the 42-year-old former law officer and volunteer church security guard said Monday at a news conference in the Colorado Springs police station.
Murray was carrying two handguns, an assault rifle and over 1,000 rounds of ammunition, said Sgt. Jeff Johnson of the Colorado Springs Police Department.

“It seemed like it was me, the gunman and God,” she said.

Assam worked as a police officer in downtown Minneapolis during the 1990s and is licensed to carry a weapon. She attends one of the morning services and then volunteers as a guard during another service.

New Life’s Senior Pastor Brady Boyd called Assam “a real hero” because Murray “had enough ammunition on him to cause a lot of damage.”

Boyd said Assam was the one who suggested the church beef up its security Sunday following the Arvada shooting, which it did. The pastor credited the security plan and the extra security for preventing further bloodshed.

Boyd said there are 15 to 20 security people at the church. All are volunteers but the only ones armed are those who are licensed to carry weapons.

The security guards are members of the church who are screened and not “mercenaries that we hire to walk around our campus to provide security,” Boyd said.

About 7,000 people were on the church campus at the time of the shooting, said Boyd….

“I just said, ‘Holy Spirit, be with me.’ I wasn’t even shaking,” Assam said. “I give the credit to God. I say this very humbly. God was with me.”

The female security guard who shot and stopped a gunman at a Colorado Springs church yesterday is crediting God for helping her to resolve the threat by killing the assailant…

“This has got to be God, because of the firepower that [the gunman] had vs. what I had was God. I did not run away and I didn’t think for a minute to run away, I just knew that I was given the assignment to end this before it got too much worse. I just prayed for the Holy Spirit to guide me.” …
“I heard shots fired. It was chaos. There were a lot of people in the church,” she described.

“The halls cleared out and I saw him coming through the doors. I took cover, waited for him to get closer, came out of cover and identified myself, engaged him, took him down,” she said.

Church officials said they have a contingent of volunteer security officers because of the high profile of the church.

“Obviously if we had not had an armed person on our campus, 50 or 100 people could have lost their lives,” the pastor said. …

…victims Stephanie Works, 18, and her sister Rachael, 16, adorned the program for services Sunday.

The two were killed when gunman Matthew Murray, armed with an assault rifle, a .40-caliber semiautomatic handgun and a 9 mm semiautomatic handgun, opened fire in the parking lot as a service was letting out. The girls’ father and two other people were wounded.

A volunteer security guard shot and wounded Murray, 24, before he turned the gun on himself. Twelve hours earlier and about 65 miles away, police said, Murray killed two staff members of the Youth With a Mission missionary training center in Arvada and wounded two others….

A Vietnam vet’s eyewitness account:

Larry Bourbonnais, a combat-tested Vietnam veteran, said it was the bravest thing he’s ever seen.

Bourbonnais, who was among those shot by a gunman Sunday at New Life Church, watched as a security guard, a woman later identified as Jeanne Assam, calmly returned fire and killed the shooter.

“She just started walking toward the gunman firing the whole way,” said Bourbonnais, who was shot in the arm. “She was just yelling ‘Surrender,’ walking and shooting the whole time.”

Bourbonnais, 59, was chowing down in the chuch cafeteria when he heard the shots. He headed in the direction of the gunfire, asking “where’s the shooter?”, as people ran past him.

Near an entryway in the church, Bourbonnais came upon the gunman and an armed male church security guard who was there with his gun drawn but not firing, he said.

“Give me your handgun. I’ve been in combat, and I’m going to take this guy out,” Bourbonnais recalled telling the guard. “He kept yelling, ‘Get behind me! Get behind me!’ He wouldn’t hand me his weapon, but he wouldn’t do anything.”

There was an additional armed security guard there, another man, who also didn’t fire, Bourbonnais said.

…Bourbonnais yelled at the gunman to draw his attention, he said.

“First, I called him ‘Coward’ then I called him ‘S—head’ ” Bourbonnais said. “I probably shouldn’t have been saying that in church.”

No, indeed, it only attracted the shooter’s attention:

That’s when the shooter pointed one of his guns at Bourbonnais and fired, he said.

Bourbonnais ducked behind a hollow, decorative pillar and was hit in the arm by a bullet and fragments of the pillar.

Enter our heroine:

Assam turned a corner with a drawn handgun, walked toward the gunman and yelled “Surrender!” Bourbonnais said.

The gunman pointed a handgun at Assam and fired three shots, Bourbonnais said. She returned fire and just kept walking toward the gunman pressing off round after round.

After the gunman went down, Bourbonnais asked Assam, a volunteer security guard with the church, how she remained so calm and focused.

Bourbonnais said she replied:

“I was asking the Holy Spirit to guide me the entire time.”

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