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Reactions to LDS Ban on Guns in Churches

Reactions to LDS Ban on Guns in Churches



Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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Jill Atwood Reporting"It's always good to be safe and secure. I'm glad they're being cautious, but I didn't know there was a problem."

That is a common reaction today to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ ruling on guns in its houses of worship. Most people we talked to didn't even realize guns in churches were a big issue. Still, on Friday the LDS church made their long-time position on firearms official.

We caught up with a few people today before church. All had the same response--it's a good idea, guns don’t belong in churches.

From the Temple to the Conference Center to the ward houses, guns are now officially banned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Elder Jackson: "I think the church is right in banning guns from church because there really is no need or no place to have a firearm."

In a letter to local leaders released on Friday the Church wrote, “Churches are dedicated for the worship of God and as havens from the cares and concerns of the world. The carrying of lethal weapons, concealed or otherwise, within their walls is inappropriate except as required by officers of the law.

Sister Jackson: "I know that the brethren have our safety in mind when they make these decisions. I feel safe when i go to my meetings. I know in other parts in world there have been issues with that, but I feel completely safe in the US going to my meetings."

Those we talked to from other faiths agree, calling the ruling common sense.

Corrine Wilmarth, First Presbyterian Church: “I just think it’s a no-brainer. Why would you bring a gun to church of all places? It’s supposed to be a place of peace and safety.”

The LDS Church will now register with the State Bureau of Criminal Investigation. Other church leaders feel a sign on the door is all that's needed. But regardless of how churches choose to enforce the ban, the end result should be the same.

Carl Wilmarth, “I don’t think that it’s wrong to have a gun or to own a gun or to have a concealed weapon. But I do think there should be limits and one of those places is a church.”

Most churches in the valley have not registered with the BCI. It will be interesting to see if that changes now that The LDS Church is moving forward.

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