TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) - A congregation is praying for an arrest after thieves stole from their sanctuary. The Upper Room Tabernacle on Navarre in east Toledo had its roof ripped up, leaving damage worth thousands of dollars.
The suspects were out to steal copper. When the church was built, copper was used on the roof to keep rain from seeping into the building.
Pastor Danny Ransey says the church has drawn sinners to steal several times.
"The first time, I believe it was $77,000 worth of damage. This time I'm guessing it was between 15 and $20,000," said Ransey.
Ransey says thieves have preyed on the church here at least three times this year; most recently being Monday night.
"You would think that a church, people would have more respect for a church, but nowadays, people don't respect a church or anybody else's property," said Ransey.
According to Ransey, the suspects climb up, remove big blocks, and take the copper underneath.
The church says whoever is responsible has practically wiped out all the copper on the grounds. They have been replacing it with stainless steel in hopes of keeping what is on their roof safe.
Still, Pastor Ransey says they will take all the extra eyes they can get to watch over the church.
"It's so important for people in the neighborhood to be watchful, as well, because we can't be here 24 hours a day. But there are neighbors that are here that if they could help watch out for us, we would certainly appreciate it," said Ransey.
Although the thieves may steal what is on top of the church and even try to steal what is inside the church, Ransey says they will not be able to steal the mission that has been put in the hearts of his congregation.
"We're very upset about what's going on, but we're very limited in what we can do. The thing for us to do, is to keep the right attitude, and not let this stop us from our mission of serving Christ," said Ransey.