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Florida church warns at every door ‘we are heavily armed’

By Travis Fedschun | Fox News  11/19/2017

A Florida church has a stark warning to all who enter who may wish to do harm–“we are heavily armed.”

The River at Tampa Bay Church regularly broadcasts its services live on social media, and in the wake of the Texas church massacre where 26 people were killed, a leader of the congregation made a splash on social media when he posted a photo of the sign.

“Welcome to The River at Tampa Bay Church — right of admission reserved — this is private property,” it reads. “Please know this is not a gun free zone — we are heavily armed — any attempt will be dealt with deadly force — yes we are a church and will protect our people.” The message is signed “The Pastors.”


Florida church warns at every door 'we are heavily armed'


Associate Pastor Allen Hawes told FOX 13 Tampa the sign has been up for over a year at the non-denominational church, but garnered attention after Senior Pastor Rodney Howard-Browne posted it on his Instagram account.

Hawes has his own concealed-carry weapons permit, and said those armed during services that draw over 1,000 could include parishioners with concealed-carry permits, private plainclothes guards, or uniformed deputies hired for security.

“If you think you are going to come here and do that, this is a deterrent for you because it is everywhere, it’s not like we hide these signs,” Hawes said. “They’re big signs, and it’s going to tell these people, we will protect our people.”

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  1. I think we should try to reduce the amount of so-called “gun free” zones. Or at least make them as safe as possible, because such zones are often targeted as an easy place for terrorist attacks. This church gives a sets a good example for all of us.


    1. Hugh,
      On a positive note; The State of Missouri currently has legislation pending to outlaw ALL “Gun Free Zones” within the State.
      In the last few years, we have strengthened our “Stand Your Ground” laws here in Missouri, and passed the “Constitutional Carry” law as well. We also added into our State Constitution an amendment that is nearly word for word with the Second Amendment of the Constitution for the united States of America. Making it a right protected by our State Constitution for all Missourians to keep and bare arms.
      While many of us that are involved with promoting these bills in Missouri, do not believe that they SHOULD be necessary, we decided that it couldn’t hurt to “Double Down” on protecting our rights.
      The current proposed legislation to ban all gun free zones has already passed through three committees, and should be up for a full vote in early 2018.
      Obviously it will not effect the Federal Gun Free sites like court houses and Post Offices, but the schools, churches, nightclubs and shopping malls, etc. will be left to the owner’s discretion if we can get this bill passed.
      Wish us luck.

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