LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Thieves have stolen an important part of history from a South Plains church.
Gloria Dei Lutheran Church off of 18th and Slide noticed their church bell was missing last Saturday.
The thieves left a piece of the hoist behind but did not forget to grab the surveillance camera.
"It was just like right here, just literally right here and it's not here anymore," said church member, Donna Perry.
An 800-pound bell with a lot of sentimental value.
"It really upset me because this bell has been with our church for at least 60 years if not longer than that," Perry said.
Two churches merged to form Gloria Dei Church and when they moved to their current location, they brought the bell with them.
"We had it sitting here, it was on a frame on cinder blocks. It was here is because this church, Gloria Dei doesn't have a bell tower," said Perry.
They've had a history with thieves breaking into the shed in the parking lot, so church members installed cameras. They never thought someone would steal the bell and the surveillance camera with it.
"We're very sad about it. We're upset and mad but basically really sad that somebody would...take a piece of our history. This is a very big piece of our history...and then just the fact that someone would come and steal from a church," Perry said.
Perry has been with the church her whole life. She remembers ringing the bell when she was 12 years old.
"I was about 12 when we did the merger. I was an acolyte which is a candle lighter. The acolytes at that time, about five minutes before the church service we would go in and ring the bell," Perry said.
"I'm probably the last person to actually ring the bell," Perry said.
The church hopes their bell will turn up.
"I was heartbroken when he told us at council," Perry said.
The bell is about two feet tall, made in Philadelphia, so it will have that inscription on it, along with weathered markings.