SPRINGFIELD, Mo.– Deborah Bedell was mowing when she heard about her church, Acts of Praise – Whole Life Ministry had been vandalized a second time.
“I just said, Are you kidding? You know, there’s just really no words for it,” Bedell said. “The first time I got pretty upset, you know? But this time I’m trying to take it in God’s way. You know, take it a little more, you know, peaceful, because being ugly and fussing and all that is not going to solve the problem.”
Pastor Frances Stafford said the vandals behind the graffiti must be hurting.
“This is second time. The first time I didn’t get upset. And the second time I ain’t upset because all we want to do is to help people,” Stafford said. “Who’s hurting? There is a reason why people do what they do.”
Stafford said someone volunteered their time to paint over the first incident of vandalism, which happened earlier this week.
“This man here came by, and he painted the wall for us. We didn’t know who he was, and he was a good Samaritan,” Stafford said.
The good samaritan with a paint brush is Ed Wilkinson.
“There was this satanic symbol here and all the stuff here, and I put the paint on there,” Wilkinson said.
“Then I had this cross I got, and then I wrote the 91st Psalms that addresses evil, and I wrote it on the wall and then painted over that and put the cross on to let them know. This is a building, the church of the people inside of it.”
Bedell says despite the events this week, the church will be okay.
“You know what the bottom line is? We forgive them,” Bedell said. “We forgive them for what they do because, as God would say, we forgive them for they do not know what they do.”