Police in Monroe are now warning local churches after a rash of break-ins and vandalism.
Police said five churches have been targeted in the past eight days, mostly along Old Charlotte Highway.
"This is highly unusual when churches are a target of these types of crimes, we take it seriously," said Sgt. Mike Smith.
Monday afternoon, police said workers at Shining Light Baptist Church discovered three buildings behind the sanctuary used for camp ministry had been seriously damaged.
Vandals kicked in doors, smashed light fixtures and windows and knocked holes in walls.
"It's just heartbreaking for us. We wanted to use these facilities to help people and encourage people," said associate pastor Wes Rigdon.
The attack follows four others.
Over the weekend, someone targeted the Seventh Day Adventist Church and stole a weed eater, a leaf blower and part of the sound system. The same evening, the window of a front door to another church was smashed.
Last week, the Plexiglas pulpit at Life Church was smashed, and two men are suspected of stealing money and sound system equipment from Benton Heights Church of God the same night.
Police believe most, if not all of the crimes, are connected.
Investigators did manage to recover some DNA evidence from one of the break-ins and said it was sent to the state lab for testing.
Anyone with information on possible suspects should call Union County Crimestoppers at 704-283-5600.