Vandals burn rainbow flags outside church

HILLSBOROUGH, NC -- A congregation says they won't let vandalism stop them from supporting everyone in the community, including gays and lesbians.

The gay pride flags are back outside the Hillsborough United Church of Christ after a vandal attempted to get rid of them.

At the foot of those poles, the charred remains of the old flags lay on the ground.

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"When I pulled up, I thought they were just missing," says Pastor Jay Kennet, "but a church member said they had actually been burned."

Pastor Kennett says someone set the flags on fire overnight on Friday. The vandalism was discovered Saturday.

"There is something about the burning that makes you feel more vulnerable," says Kennet. "We wanted to send a message to the community that we are supporting all of the people in our community."

Neighbors say they are concerned about the incident, but have mixed feelings.

Resident Lesa Kurylo says she doesn't think the flag burning is representative of the their community.

"I thought it was a really terrible thing to do," says Kurylo.

Nathan Taylor, however, says he is worried the vandals may share the sentiments of many.

"That kind of bigotry is all too common, and it's really gotten me kind of down trodden lately," Taylor says.

Pastor Kennett says the flag burning will not stop the church from showing love to the LGBT community.

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