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North Texas Churches Open Doors Despite Last Week's Fatal Shooting That Killed 2 Parishioners

WHITE SETTLEMENT, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) — Many congregations across North Texas gathered Sunday for the first time since the deadly shooting at West Freeway Church of Christ.

The tragic shooting that left 2 parishioners dead in White Settlement last week didn't stop people in Fort Worth from going to church.

"If West Freeway Church of Christ could meet again today, we can meet today," said Pastor Jeff Wickwire with Turning Point Church.

What happened last Sunday was certainly top of mind for churchgoers.

"I definitely know that people are probably scared and have ideas about things like that happening, but I've always felt really safe here," said Stephanie Ladner, a member of Christ Chapel Bible Church.

Congregants at Christ Chapel Bible Church say police officers are there every Sunday, which makes them feel more secure.

Armed security guards stood outside the Fort Worth Campus of the hills Sunday morning, too.

"Every church, every synagogue needs to — I believe — take measures to keep themselves safe," Pastor Wickwire said.

Turning Point Church has uniformed police and security guards on site as well.

"And we allow conceal carry here," Wickwire said. "I told the church, we can't let things like this intimidate us, muzzle us, cause us to want to stay home and not remain involved in our faith. Let it be something that moves us forward."

He says his congregation is following the example set by West Freeway Church of Christ, which met to worship today in the same sanctuary where two of their own lost their lives.

"It's such a hard time for people, not knowing who's going to walk in the doors and possibly be an enemy." Katy Willis of University Baptist Church said. "But at the same time, you don't want to close your doors down because you still want to be open for everyone."

Several pastors took time to recognize West Freeway members and prayed for them during service.

"It's just really sad and I hope it doesn't deter people from attending worship services, just because it is a safe place and it is where we go to feel lifted up," Ladner said.

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