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How To Protect Church Property

How should a church protect it's property from loitering and the homeless who sleep on the church steps wating for a hand-out but at the same time be a "light" and help the poor & hungry at the same time?

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 ---Bill on 10/18/06
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Unfortunately, the litigious climate in the United States tends to punish simple acts of charity.

If a homeless person sleeps on your step, and later injures himself, you could be sued for many hundreds of thousands of dollars. As a result, many churches have had to build fences and post "no trespassing" signs to defend themselves from the potential theat of being bankrupted by crazy lawsuits.
---StrongAxe on 3/20/08


Isn't there a shelter somewhere that you could assist in giving transportation to?
---sue on 3/20/08


Catherine: you are not coming off as holy, you are coming off as foolish and a very unwise person. It is ok to be kind and christ-like to others but not to be foolish. When assistance is given to these people, you have done your christian duty. There has to be rules and regulations in anything that we do. If not, there will be trouble and confusion. God is a God of peace, not confusion.
---Robyn on 3/20/08


I am really not trying to be so holy but let them sleep. It is God's world it is God's building. Leave these people along. I am serious. I am so sick and tired of people preaching about love, all they know how to preach is about love and noone knows what it is. You don't preach about God's damnation, His judgment. No one walks in love today. Spiritual love, NO! Stop hitting people on the head it is brutal.
---catherine on 3/19/08


Take some of the pastors mega salaries and build an area, rent a house or some type facility where they can wait for a meal or receive some type help. They should be told to leave when they have received their help.Return at appropriate times when the church is offering other assistance.Some churches have fences and gates to keep people from loitering around it and parking there illegally.
---Robyn on 3/18/08




Have baskets of food for them so when they come there, they know they can be fed. Love them with the Love of Jesus and pray with them. Make friends with them. Invite them inside to be warm, provide them blankets, etc., "Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me. When I was hungry you gave me to eat, when I was thirsty you gave me to drink, etc.,"
---Donna9759 on 3/17/08


The first part of your issue should be discussed with your insurance agent, your legal adviser, and the police.

The second part should be discussed among your church's leadership.
---Jack on 5/2/07


alan n donna thank u4 your answers, I go along with u 2. We must heed the call of Jesus to feed the hungry, visit those in prison, be kind 2 one another. Dont chase them off yours or churches steps. If theyre witnessing, u should be as well. I always think of the hungry when I go 2 throw a piece of bread 2 the birds. u do this and am sure God will bless abundantly. God bless
---mmadm on 10/22/06


Doing street witnessing one night, I will never forget seeing the rolled up belongings of a man on church grounds. It almost broke my heart. The man was not there, he possibly was at a hotel across the road. I was told the police would soon move him on. The church should help those people.
---Helen_5378 on 10/21/06


Pharisee's answer is the most judicious in that is provides a more long term solution to a problem that will get worse rather than better.
---Madison1101 on 10/20/06




I carry a few bus tickets and coupons for MacDonald's. If a person comes up and says he's hungry, or needs a bus ride, I give those.

These are more likely to be used for their avowed purpose, if the person really needs these things.
---Jack on 10/19/06


Take up a collection to start a shelter.
---Pharisee on 10/18/06


Perhaps we should not stop the hungry and homeless for approaching the church buildings.
Did not Jesus tell us to feed the hungry, visit those in jail, clothe the naked?
---alan8869_of_UK on 10/18/06


A local clergy association is set up a fund with their police with funds donated by the churches to be given out to homeless or transient individuals. This protects church staff members and keeps people from making the rounds of churchs to get money. The police know who the people are, the watch commander gives out the funds. A report of fund expenditures is given to the clergy association periodically for accounting control. I is a safe way to manage a potentially dangerous problem.
---notlaw99 on 10/18/06


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