Old boards have been nailed together to make a sign standing outside the Vilonia Church of the Nazarene and it simply says "Pray They Do What is Right." Pastor James Smith said the sign was made by one of the members of his church and that is what the congregation of his church has been for several months and they are asking others to join them. Asking for a clarification as to who "they "are, Smith said "They know who they are and God knows who they are." Hesitantly, he provided an explanation. The church was damaged during the April 25, 2011 tornado. The roof remains covered with the fading tarp that was bright blue when positioned on top about 15 months ago. The bottom line Smith said, a new church will have to be built.
"The building has to come down," he added. "It would cost more to fix than replace." The roof, Smith explained, is not a conventional roof. The boards are slatted, he offered. With the roof damage, he said, the rain from the tornado poured inside and caused water damage. "The interior from the brick in was damaged," he added. When a piece of sheetrock was removed from a wall, Smith said, it was discovered the building also has termite damage. That was a surprise, Smith said, since they had been paying a termite company, for about 45 years, to take care of any potential problems. Since the tornado, Smith said, church members have been in continuous negotiations with insurance companies. They have been holding church services in the family life center located just behind the damaged sanctuary. Used for other activities, he said, there is a lot of "setting up and taking down "involved with using the life center. As last resort, Smith said, the church members recently hired attorney Daniel Brock of Simpson and Simpson in Searcy to handle matters with the termite’s insurance company. As of Friday, Brock said, a lawsuit has not been filed. However, he said, demands have been submitted to the termite’s insurance company and the deadline has passed.
"The poor church has been through a lot this year," Brock said. "First the tornado and now this. The termite company wants it resolved. We are just going to keep working until we get this corrected."