Oh, Louisville: you are so loved! You have horse races. Fine theater. A birthplace for baseball bats. And now: a church where the pastor is inviting his parishioners and the public to bring their guns inside the sanctuary, today.
Pastor Ken Pagano of the New Bethel Church in Louisville, Kentucky is having members of his church along with anybody else in the general, gun-owning public to come on down and hang out! Even better, the New York Times blog The Lede is covering it live, and writing it up quite excitedly ("12:30 p.m. We are just a few hours away from the bring-your-gun-to-church event here at the New Bethel Church in Louisville. Doors open at 4:30 p.m."). It reads like a Phish concert, except, the exact opposite. Notably, the church's insurance company opted out of insuring the church for the day:
The pastor, Ken Pagano, told us a couple of days ago that the church's insurance company was opting out for the day, and that there was some question about whether parishioners would have to leave their guns outside. But I just spoke with Mr. Pagano, and he said he had found new insurance coverage for the day. He would not say who provided it.
Other interesting things: the church is having a $1 raffle for a handgun today. When presented with statistics from an LA Times article regarding church shootings (especially an interesting one about the 18 that happened in 2008, as opposed to the 6 in 2007), Pagano noted that the security of the church was part of the reason he was holding the event in the first place: to encourage churchgoers to secure the church through private gun ownership.
The most recent high-profile church shooting was that of abortion doctor George Tiller. Law enforcement's on hand to make sure none of the guns brought in the church are loaded, but they can't check for concealed weapons (by definition).