Go heeled for God: Bill would allow guns in church

A bill authored by House Judiciary Chairman Andy Gipson would allow Mississippi churches to authorize members to carry firearms and provide legal protection for those who do.

“I started thinking about this after the church shooting in South Carolina,” Gipson said of House Bill 786, the “Mississippi Church Protection Act” now pending in his committee.

Gipson said state law is unclear, and conflicting, on packing in church.

“One section says you can with an enhanced carry permit, another statute has an outright prohibition for places of worship,” Gipson said. “This gives churches the option, the choice. They can create their own security program and designate members who can carry … A lot of these smaller churches can’t afford to hire security.”