Thieves have struck again at a north Memphis church, stealing the church's HVAC unit for the fifth time.
“I think people are sick, but we're supposed to be Christians, we're supposed to turn the other cheek,” Deacon James L. Williams said.
The Workmen of Christ Holiness Church has been in Williams’ family for 20 years. Williams’ mother is the pastor, and he serves as deacon.
Williams told MyFoxMemphis it all started with the first time someone stole their HVAC unit about 18 years ago.
“They just tore it up, took all the stuff, and just gutted it out,” Williams said, “That's what they did here to get the copper and stuff.”
That was the first time, but then it happened again.
“We were angry, pastor said we're just going to pray, and we did, and we made provisions,” Williams said.
And it kept happening.
“We've had four other times before this; this is the fifth time,” Williams said.
Each time, Williams said it costs about $5,000 to replace the unit. It’s money that insurance didn't always cover.
Williams said neighbors do what they can to keep a lookout, and church leaders have made some changes.
“We changed insurance companies, and we got security, that was about four years ago, since that time we haven't had any problems,” Williams said.
That was until Sunday morning when it happened again. This time someone got past their security system.
“Somebody had to know what they were doing,” Williams said, “I wouldn't say it was the same people.”
Despite the setbacks, Williams says he hopes the people responsible are caught, but they don't wish them any ill will.
“What you're doing is wrong, and we're going to pray about it, and we're going to let God handle it,” Williams said, “If you're caught, we're going to prosecute you though; I'll be in court.”
The latest theft happened sometime in the last week, according to church leaders at Workmen of Christ Holiness Church on Dunlap in North Memphis.