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Detroit Lakes 'Cowboy Church' amps up security after string of break-ins

 
 

Along Highway 34 outside Detroit Lakes, you'll hear bells from the little red barn on the hill. 

The barn, not filled with cows, is instead filled with an unusual congregation.

"We're the church inside the Bible, but outside the box," says Cowboy Church Pastor Brian Erickson.

What happens when a night of worship turns into a night of worry? The Cowboy Church has been broken into three separate times. And this congregation is prepared to take care of everyone, no matter what the situation.

"We're trying to be proactive rather than reactive," says Erickson.

Steve Huddleston is the creator and leader of what the Cowboy Church calls the "Posse."

"We have an AED here, we've got a first class first aid set up," says Huddleston.

The members of Cowboy Church get safety training regularly, 15 minutes per topic every week.

"We can kind of keep a handle on everything that's going on on the grounds and in the church," says church member Marcia Huddleston.

They have a number security cameras, and people can see Steve monitoring during every service.

"What prompted it was different active shooters from around the United States," says Steve.

Cameras aren't the only thing the Posse is armed with. Several members of the congregation have their permit to carry.

"That's our last line of defense, that's our last interest," says Erickson.

The pastor feels he's a shepherd, and a good shepherd protects his flock.

"If we have a sick sheep, we need to take care of that sheep. If we have a threat that comes against us, we need to be able to protect our sheep from the threat," says Erickson.

One church on a hill, taking protection into their own hands. The Cowboy Church plans on adding more cameras and to continue training the congregation.

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