Regarding “Workers roughed up after man enters pastoral center,” Nov. 1, Page 1:  

The facts of this incident clearly illustrate the need for every parish to develop protocols for dealing with a host of safety, security and medical issues that are occurring far too frequently in today’s society.

While mass shootings always grab the headlines, lesser yet still worrisome incidents occur almost daily in churches and places of worship in Oregon and throughout the nation.

Fortunately, the incident that occurred at the chancery did not have more tragic consequences. The need to be continually vigilant and proactive is the takeaway. 

We know the safety and security of our parishioners, staff, employees and volunteers are of great concern to the pastoral center. We would expect archdiocesan leaders to take a proactive role in encouraging and assisting the parishes in developing safety and security procedures suitable to their specific needs.

The development of such procedures takes time, consideration and discussion by a committee to ensure that whatever is created is unique and appropriate to that parish. At St. Alice Parish in Springfield, our safety and security committee has developed such procedures, and af-ter three years, we are still reviewing and fine-tuning them as conditions and situations in our parish change.

There is no one-size-fits-all set of procedures because each parish is unique with unique demographics. But each parish should take seriously the events that occurred at the pastoral center on Oct. 17, and actively pursue procedures designed to safeguard the safety and well-being of their parishioners.

Mike Whitney

Jim Horton

Safety and Security


St. Alice Parish