Church hosts active shooter training

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WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

Houses of worship are now targets by gunmen and a Wichita church has announced it will host an active shooter training in response.

"Is not a fear base, it's a situational awareness," said Hollie Tapley, Disaster Services Coordinator with the Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church.

"To be able to know what to do, and how to react."

The Conference is holding an active shooter training in December. It's open to the public and designed to teach church attendees how to react if a gunman ever opened fire.

"Run, Hide, Fight," Tapley said. "We can't be naive."

She said it's precautionary. The intention isn't to scare worshipers, it's to make them feel more at ease.

Even as she attends weekly service at Chapel Hill United Methodist Church, she admits to locating available exits when she sits down. She hopes to teach others about that awareness.

Kansas churches have been targets before.

Dr. George Tiller was one of the few doctors nationwide who performed late-term abortions. He was shot in 2009 in the foyer of his longtime church as he handed out bulletins.

But in that case, just one man was the target. In Texas, it seemed to be the entire congregation. 26 people were killed and that Sunday proved that not even a church is safe from a gunman intent to kill dozens.

The Conference is offering the training on December 3rd from 3pm - 5pm at Chapel Hill Methodist Church. It is open to the public. To register, click here.

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