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Church in Lake Clarke Shores to increase security following tragedy in Texas

Posted at 4:23 AM, Nov 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-06 08:53:30-05

In the wake of the tragedy in Texas, South Florida churches are praying for the victims and families in the Sunday's church shooting.

"I was devastated when I saw what was happening down in Texas," said Pastor Tom Hunter of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Lake Clarke Shores.

RELATED: Gunman kills 26 at Texas church | Texas shooting among deadliest in U.S. history 

They're also thinking about how they can make their own parishes safer.

“It can happen anywhere," Hunter said.

The pastor said he will now lock the doors when services start at Emmanuel Baptist Church and require anyone coming in after that to check in with someone.

He has installed security cameras inside and outside of the church in the years since the shooting at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston.

"We in the church today are just walking circumspectly," he said. "The Bible says we need to walk very carefully in this world and realize it could happen here as well."

He said he has also asked certain church members to conceal and arm themselves with guns while at church.

"Everything’s been in reaction to what’s happening in the world," Hunter said.

Hunter said he held a special prayer at Sunday night's service for those affected by the shooting in Texas.

"When we started off with prayer, you could sense the heaviness, and we stopped and everybody prayed and it wasn’t easy to begin to sing songs," he said. "It almost felt like we should pray and go home, but we stayed and had a good service."

His role is to make sure his church can continue to be a safe haven that it's meant to be and its members follow the goodness in their hearts.

"We don’t understand it. Nobody is going to be able to explain it," he said. "Just trust the Lord."