Early Monday morning a church in Central Florida was set on fire, and the graffiti that was found on a building on the church’s property has led to an FBI investigation.
Melbourne Police said that firefighters and officers responded to a 3 a.m. call about a fire at the New Shiloh Christian Church, which is suspected to be arson after chilling words and symbols were found on a shed in the back of the property, Local 6 reported. The 1,500-member church in Melbourne was said to have had about $5,000 worth of damage done to it from the fire, which would have been much worse had the sprinklers not contained it.
“To wake up to a call at 3:30 a.m. and find this, it’s mind-blowing,” said Bishop Jacquelyn Gordon, according to Florida Today.
Whoever started the fire spray painted a swastika with the words “We see u” in blue on the side of the building attached to the church, which made Gordon extremely uneasy.
“When I pulled over and saw the (Swastika), I was like, ‘oh my God…’ when I see that sign and to put it here, what it says to me is ‘hatred,’” she said.
The swastika was the least of her worries, however, as the arsonist, or arsonists, also used the same blue paint to write the words “Allahu Akbar,” which means “Our God is great” in Arabic, on the same building.
“To find something like that in 2015 is unbelievable. It’s just disheartening,” she said.
The possible ties to Muslim extremists have led the FBI to look into the blaze. When asked for comment, a representative from the agency told Local 6, “We are aware of the incident and reviewing the matter.”
Melbourne Police haven’t said whether or not they’re going to consider it a hate crime. However, firefighters quickly found evidence of arson once they were able to contain the fire. According to police, this is apparently the second time in two weeks that the church has been targeted.
Whoever started the fire got into the compound and tried to break their way into another compartment, and at one point tore a hole through the wooden frame. They then set fire to a locked door that led into the electrical room where there was also a large diesel fuel tank.
“To be honest, I’m really nervous and fearful that in 2015, we’re still having to explain something like this,” said Gordon.
Gordon’s congregation is also unsettled by the fire. A church member who has worked with the Bishop for 17 years feared that it may not be the last they hear from whoever is responsible.
“We’ve never seen anything like this. It just feels uneasy. We don’t know what’s next,” said Bufus Jefferson. “We don’t know what’s next.”
While the investigation is still ongoing, it wouldn’t surprise me in the least if this was connected to someone who was Muslim. All across the world churches are being burned and Christians are being murdered, all in the name of Islam, and we all know it’s only a matter of time before it becomes more common here in America.
—Courtesy of Mad World News