Church falls victim to copper theft - again

The stolen A/C units were in cages designed to deter thieves, but the crooks just broke the locks
October 28, 2012 8:28:17 PM PDT
There is a saying that the doors of a church are open to all, but the pastor at Visionary Baptist Church in southwest Houston says he needs to buy a fence.

For the second time, someone has stolen the church's air conditioners.

It happened Thursday after choir practice at their building on Ormandy. The church was still getting over another A/C theft that happened just last year.

"Those are big commercial units," Rev. Manuel Fletcher said.

Four units were stolen and another one was damaged. They were in cages designed to deter thieves, but the crooks just broke the locks.

The mission of this church is to spread the good news, so hearing this bad news was disappointing to the congregation.

"People will do anything these days. I mean, to come to a church and take something is like stealing from God," congregation member Demetrius Caraway said. "My heart was just broken."

The church says it will cost $80-90,000 to replace the units.

"I was distraught that someone would steal from a church," member Patsy Caraway said.

Although the theft is upsetting, Fletcher sees it as an opportunity to offer those who stole from this place a new beginning.

"I believe a lot of good is going to come out of this," he said. "That is why I preached today 'when bad things happen to good people.' What was meant for harm will work for good."

The message to the thieves is one of forgiveness and compassion.

"I would pray for them because anytime you take from the Lord or the house of the Lord, there are dire consequences," Fletcher said. "You have to be bold to steal something from the Lord."

The hope is that no more thefts will happen here, but even if they do, the mission to spread the good news will continue.


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