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Church Fuel Oil Stolen

Updated: Monday, February 17 2014, 11:43 PM EST
Members of a Haywood County church arrived for their Sunday service, only to find the sanctuary feeling like a deep freeze.  Someone broke-into the fuel tank outside and took up to 125 gallons of heating oil.   

Full Gospel Holiness Church in Canton has only about 30 or 40 members. They can't afford what happened and also can't believe it did.

Steve Burnette's father founded Full Gospel 30 years ago. Now he's trying to deal what happened sometime before church on Sunday. Something he believes did not have to happen.

"I fear god, you couldn't pay me to steal or do something against god's house or god's people. We would have bought them oil if they would've come and asked for it," said Burnette. 

Reverend Ron Gardner is the associate pastor. He was among the first to arrive for the service. He says what amounts to an unexpected heating bill is awfully touch to handle.

"It's really a struggle for this church to pay the pastor. So to have this happen to us, you know. Little churches, little stores, whatever. They can't afford to be keep getting hit like they're hitting nowadays. I believe that we'll get the oil filled-up this week and I'm just praying that they don't come back again," said Rev. Gardner. 

But if they do, Rev. Gardner wants it to be because they realize they've done the wrong thing and are looking to make it right.

"If they come to us, forgiveness is in our heart, it is. And if they don't, if they're on the wrong trail and they don't ever want to repent on what they done, then I hope the sheriff finds them," said Rev. Gardner. Church Fuel Oil Stolen


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