A Greenville County church pastor says he will not let the acts of vandals discourage his congregation.
Greenville County investigators say 2 church were vandalized on Sunday.
According to deputies both churches, Waycross Baptist Church and Augusta Road United Methodist, are in Pelzer and less than a mile from each other.
Like every Sunday morning for the last 5 years, Waycross Baptist Church Senior Pastor Dicky McCuen walked up to open the sanctuary doors before service.
“On the walkways across I already saw that the windows were all blown out and I didn’t know what exactly had happened at that time,” he told 7News.
McCuen says as he walked past the pews he noticed nothing was taken, but the church he grew up going to and now preaches at was vandalized.
“I don’t understand why people want to do that, because you’re not attacking the members here or me. You are actually attacking God himself when you deface his property.” McCuen said. “It was heartbreaking. It was definitely heartbreaking.”
The Senior Pastor called Greenville County deputies, who took statements and interviewed possible witnesses.
All Sunday services were moved to the building next door.
“We are not going to be stopped by some people doing things in the middle of the night. In fact, we had 6 people join the church this morning. I told them [the congregation that the vandals should] come back [and] blow the rest of [the windows] them out tonight. Maybe I’ll get 10 people next Sunday,” McCuen said.
McCuen says it’ll be months before they can replace the antique windows that were installed in 1956 when the church was renovated.
“These windows, as you know this church is very old, the windows they are special.” The Senior Pastor told 7News. “Even though they [may not] look like every casing is [not] exactly the same.”
McCuen says once the sanctuary is cleaned up this week, services will resume there on Sunday.
He says it’s difficult to understand why someone would deface a place of worship, but he’s already forgiven the vandals and won’t let this act break his spirit.
“I think I go back to scripture and say, they know not what they do,” McCuen told 7News.
Waycross Baptist Church does have insurance that will cover the cost of the damages.
The Senior Pastor tells 7News they do have a security system in place, but he says the cameras didn’t catch the vandals. Following this incident, church officials plan to upgrade the security system at Waycross Baptist.
This is an ongoing investigation.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office.