November 9th, 2011
05:20 PM ET

Church fears God and golf balls

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

(CNN) – Congregants at Faith Evangelical Presbyterian Church in Fairfax, Virginia, aren't just bowing their heads to pray, they are also ducking golf balls.

Despite nets and other efforts by a driving range that abuts the church property, duffers are shanking tee shots onto the church's property, knocking out windows and hitting church members.

One shot even hit the church's youth pastor. "The ball came through the trees and hit him on the head. He fell to the ground, stunned but not unconscious," Robert Mackey, an elder at the church told CNN affilate WUSA.

Mackey said he has found 2,600 golf balls on the church's property in just the past year.

"Our staff lives with the fear of being hit by a golf ball any time and that just doesn't seem right to me," he said to WUSA.

Willie Wilson, the general manager of Top Golf, said the driving range has put up nets, warning signs, and even bans the use of golfers using certain clubs on Sunday when the church meets.

"We have been good neighbors. When there's been an issue, such as a broken window, we've fixed it. And we have done so without hesitation," Wilson told WUSA.

WUSA reports the church wants Top Golf to be prosecuted for persistent public nuisance.

In October, a special grand jury agreed with the church and the matter could be headed to court as soon as January.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • Faith & Health

soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. Odell Lappin

    There is a common question that many golf players often asked which is about golf balls for beginners and the question is always the same in each level of the play. Well, there are several aspects that you should look after while choosing the golf balls for beginners’ level. First you have to find out in which level you want to start your play (it may be beginners’ level or advanced level) and secondly you need to determine how you want to play this game and thirdly which type of ball you expect. Well, the knowledge about these things is very vital as this will help you to play this game better way. '

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    March 29, 2013 at 2:13 am |
  2. amenyahad

    At least you have a building for church. Probably nice one too with expensive brick and morter and stained glass. In my country there is nothing but sand and hardship. I go days without food. The hunger is, at times, unbearable. I praise the lord when the UNICEF supplies come and I can get my bowl of creamed wheat. I praise the lord that I still have one good arm to feed myself with his wonderful bounty. I lost my other arm in bombing when I was 5 years old during civil war.

    November 30, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  3. myklds

    To those who have faith, NO explanation is necessary. While to those who don't have (faith), NO explaination would be enough to satisfy its necessity.

    May God Bless all atheists with faith.

    November 12, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  4. Ridler????????

    To church goers for safety...wear helmet as you attend church services.

    November 11, 2011 at 7:43 pm |
  5. Dumb & Dumber

    The best solution for the church leaders is get some mortars and cannon and fire back to the golfers...Lets see who will lay flat to the ground.

    November 11, 2011 at 7:41 pm |
  6. m_hudgins

    I disagree, read http://blog.usedgolfballdeals.com/dunlop-golf-balls

    November 11, 2011 at 8:47 am |
  7. Everett Wallace

    yes golf balls are cool.

    November 11, 2011 at 2:06 am |
  8. PooCorn

    They should exchange all the golf balls for grenades. Then the church idiots won't have to worry about getting hit by golf balls anymore.

    November 10, 2011 at 8:03 pm |
  9. halligator

    So? Get your god to protect you from the balls.

    November 10, 2011 at 7:47 pm |
  10. clay

    Is there seriously so little happening that this actually made the news?
    Whatever happened to that Iranian Pastor anyway? Did I miss that ending?

    November 10, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  11. Chuckles

    I can just see it now,

    A pastor standing in front of the parishoners, reading a passage, "A verily, I say unto, said jesus, that you must go forth and do good acts and.....DUCK"

    November 10, 2011 at 1:10 pm |
  12. RightTurnClyde

    This is no story .,.. churches can relocate and so can driving ranges .. it has nothing to do with faith. (or even religion) ... it is just a one-instance nuisance thing.

    November 10, 2011 at 1:09 pm |
  13. RogueThinker

    I would think it would depend on who was there first: the church or the driving range. If the range was there first, sorry, but I think the church is out of luck. If, however, the range came in latter, then yeah the church has a real shot (sorry couldn't resist the pun!)

    November 10, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
  14. Colin

    It must be difficult living next to such a public nuisance, where people go for the simple pleasure of whiling away a Sunday morning engaging in a harmless, but ultimately futile activity.

    But enough about the church, the golf course is a nuisance, too.

    November 10, 2011 at 8:25 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.