This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
  • johnjohn Mar 6, 2013

    In reference to the Acorn Ridge story:
    In 2004, the same thing happened to my family at Acorn Ridge. We have told no one, but I believe the time is right for the whole story to be told.

  • oleguy Mar 5, 2013

    Forgive me Lord, But my Brothers and I would be digging a grave on that lot.I kept my mouth shut till now. But a hole or several holes would be dug, or someone would have to pry the shovel from my cold dead Hands.

  • iwasjustsaying Mar 5, 2013

    @stanglvr -

    if these are the "facts", why where they not relayed to anyone...and why do they chose not to comment?

  • mustang74 Mar 4, 2013

    I live in robbins and let me set some of the facts straight. I know this church and the pastor well. It's his way or none at all. This is not the first family that had arrangements for family burial that when the time came they were turned away with an unkind message. Also there have been others buried there in the past few years that were not members. Its about who you know. This is not the christian way to turn your back on people in there time of need. Now those are the real facts.

  • Elem-Teach Mar 4, 2013


    I just looked on the map of Acorn Ridge. It looks as though the church cemetery has lots of room for expansion. The road goes to an empty field with NO headstones. To be sure the church could have allowed her a spot on this EMPTY ground!

  • stanglvr Mar 1, 2013

    go to Get the real facts.

  • tbarham Mar 1, 2013

    as a Pastor's wife..let me clarify something for you all. Just because he is the minister does not mean he runs the is run like a business...the boards make policy and enforce it..I am not saying what they did is right. but to bash the minister is WRONG...that is like blaming your coworker for YOU not getting a raise..he does not have the AUTHORITY to make it happen...

  • shortcake53 Mar 1, 2013

    This is the MOST shameful thing I have ever heard of and I hope the members of this "church" are really proud of themselves. Money grubbing hypocrites is what they have shown themselves to be. Honor, respectability, and doing what is right better not show up in any future sermons, as this church has no business speaking of things they themselves do not practice.

  • superman Mar 1, 2013

    If the "church" and I use that word lightly--has a side perhaps they could type up their side it put it on the "church" web site. They say nothing because their excuse has no merit. I feel sorry for the "minister" his love of money is greater than his love of God and his word.

  • superman Mar 1, 2013

    dennis23-- The "minister" is the one who stands up and preaches and gets paid. He is morally obligated to stand up and express his concerns whenever the church is in the "wrong". The minister should not look the other way and dismiss his role in the church. When he does nothing he becomes part of the problem. Does it make a difference whether they purchased a plot-reserved a plot or whatever. She has family there. Do the right thing and not the legal thing. There is no church there--just a building where people go.

  • superman Mar 1, 2013

    So the "minister" going to sit back and ignore the wrong from the BOT. The preacher is just saying empty meaningless words. To be a christian it is just more than being a good talker.

    stanglvr-- If there is more to this story perhaps you would be willing to explain. Please just get past the question of whether it is or was legal. When dealing with a "church" cant we just expect them to do the "right" thing rather than the legal issue. How many active members have their buried in the cemetary? To be active you have to be alive. When you die you are no longer an active member of any church.

  • btneast Mar 1, 2013

    to hear that the church won't let an immediate family member be buried there in a family-owned plot WHICH THEY SOLD THEM

    Wrong, evidently you haven't read any of the comments. They reserved a space. No "sale" took place.

  • cjtelesca Mar 1, 2013

    So let's see - you can buy a burial plot from the church which they will sell you, but then when it comes time to bury someone in the plot they turn you down. Time to reign in these burial associations - they could just as easily restrict burial to people based on race. As someone who comes from a family that purchased 8 burial plots back in 1939 when my grandfather passed away, and my grandmother was buried there in 1946 when she died, and my uncle was buried there in 2004 when he died - to hear that the church won't let an immediate family member be buried there in a family-owned plot WHICH THEY SOLD THEM simply because the recently departed didn't attend church there is despicable!

  • HDStreetGlide Feb 28, 2013

    stanglvr you sound like you may or may have family that serve as trustee's at Acorn Ridge Baptist Church....You know that what that church did was wrong, just as the rest of us know...jma47 you are so right in your statement.

  • Feb 28, 2013

    I still believe the church would give details if the information would clear their name. This has the potential to
    Hurt the church's reputation.

  • cjessie1923 Feb 28, 2013

    I think it's bad that they let it get this far, even if we don't know the whole story, it still has tarnished that Church's reputation forever...The devil is getting a good laugh from this one, I'm sure.

  • stanglvr Feb 28, 2013

    As someone well familiar with this church, I can tell you that the full details of this story are NOT being told. Out of respect for the pastor's wishes and those of the church, The church's side of the story is not being told. I can tell you that the monuments and the "mother" stone in the video from the graveyard are NOT those of Mrs. Maness, but rather some of her DISTANT family who WERE members of the church at the time of their death. SHAME on those of you condemning the pastor, Baptists and Christians in general; you don't know the half of this story. Get your facts straight.

  • atheistswillrule Feb 28, 2013

    People attend this church because of the core values and beliefs it upholds. citizenconcerned

    Yeah, you keep telling that to yourself.

  • dennis23 Feb 28, 2013

    The Pastor should not be expected to take a side on this issue. He is there to preach and it sounds like he is well liked. The trustees should have bent the rules this one time due to the circumstances. I don't think the congregation would have disapproved.

  • pipcolt Feb 28, 2013

    I hope its board of trustees can sleep well at night... Is all baptist churches this way or just the ones that I know of that will turn there backs on you at time of need. It would be hard to go to a church that would stand in the way of a family member being laid to rest with its family. If not for the family the church would not have been built there.

  • downtowner Feb 28, 2013

    Acorn Ridge's reputation will forever be tainted after this debacle. Get ready for some heavy showers cause God has to be crying after seeing this.

  • Desiderata Feb 28, 2013

    GOD is everywhere, all knowing is what I have been told. He is there everywhere, so why do you go to just one building to have a meet and greet with GOD? I imagine him at my side where ever I go, and with this story we are , yet again, encouraged to look into ourselves and our values. Bless this family for what they have had to endure from those who seek to put "rules" above doing what is right.

  • Capitals Fan Feb 28, 2013

    "It is stories like this that reaffirm my decision not to go to church. wolfpack32 February 28, 2013 3:23 p.m"

    This situation is sad and wrong but it is even more off base for you to use it as an EXCUSE not to go to church. This story should not have that effect on you any more than a bad doctor doesn't stop you from going to the doctor. No body is perfect, you can't forsake everyone which is what you are doing. JMO.

  • countrycitygirl Feb 28, 2013

    2beornot2be, you couldn't have said it any better! Acorn Ridge has gained lots of new members in the past few years from areas surrounding Robbins and they are the ones that make the final decisions for the most part. There are a few older members left, but not many. Rest assured that the older ones are not happy about this from what I have gathered.

  • citizenconcerned Feb 28, 2013

    As a non-profit church they do not sell plots. The plots are reserved for current members and their immediate family members and have been for years. This woman was not a member and hadn't attended this church in years (if ever). To allow anyone to be burried on land their ancestors donated would mean you would have to allow the hundreds of decendents to be burried there and continue to do so for generations to come. Eventually there would be no room left. This church is a great church, a growing and thriving church with wonderful members and great leadership. These plots may have been "reserved" 32 years ago but were never purchased. People attend this church because of the core values and beliefs it upholds and because of a great pastor and wonderful kids program. This church will continue to grow and members will attend on Sunday. Prayers for all and condolences for this family in their time of loss.

  • uncfan89 Feb 28, 2013

    well said luv2playsoccer! It doesn't matter if the plots were purchased or reserved, this family believed for over 30 years that these plots were theirs and that when they needed them they would be there. If the church changed its policies then folks that had plots resevered that were no longer active should have been notified. To wait until someone has died and say to the family too bad find somewhere else is shameful. I attend a small country church and there are plenty of plots that are reserved in our church cemetary for people that are no longer active members but they can still be buried there. There have been numberous times that people have been buried that I had no idea who they were but had historical ties to the church. Just remember the Bible teaches you "reap what you sow"!!

  • countrycitygirl Feb 28, 2013

    @ Daisy, thank you for your words. I grew up in this church, and though I do not agree with what is going on, I know the heart of this Pastor. My Mother was married in this church, my Grandma sung in the choir since she was a little girl in that church, my childhood memories are in that church......and though I do not go on a regular basis now due to the fact that I live so far away, I visit as often as possible. I am not on here to say that the situation is right, because I do not agree to it at all. I believe the lady should have been buried where she thought she was going to be. BUT I will not sit back and let someone degrade my church or my Pastor. My belief and faith came from the teachings at Acorn Ridge and I have nothing but great memories. Pastor John is a wonderful person with one of the biggest hearts I have ever seen in my life. For all of you that are sitting here sending him "hate" messages, maybe you should pray for him and the decision that was made.

  • countrycitygirl Feb 28, 2013

    Superman, the money is the last thing that is on his mind honey. This Preacher gives more than he takes. Stop assuming you know a person when you clearly don't.

  • Feb 28, 2013

    Country city girl: I believe you about pastor. Could you tell us what really is going on with Board?
    Apparently the board isn't going to enlighten us. Thanks for sharing your experiences in this church

  • raleighdurham Feb 28, 2013

    People, when a church owns a property, they have every right to limit the burials to members only. Otherwise, their members might be out trying to find somewhere else when they're full. -ConcernedNCC

    concerned -- that's true. but you're forgetting that she bought the plot, stones were laid down years ago, and she WAS a member.

  • ncwolf08 Feb 28, 2013

    To jdo823

    You are so right. I am so glad that God's blessings extend to us all and not just one denomination. I am sorry others do not see that.

  • ncwolf08 Feb 28, 2013

    I say if the contract made 30 years ago is no longer valid,then the contract for the land is no longer valid either. Take back your land. I am sure there is a new church that would love to have some property...and, this one already comes with a church building.

  • chattycat Feb 28, 2013

    Report abuse


    @countrycitygirl: "..Yes, they preach the Word of God and have awesome core values."

    Ah, I believe in the house (or land) of God, there is no such thing as "Members Only"!


    Very good point JDO823.

  • btneast Feb 28, 2013

    I don't know the situation but it seems clear to me can anything be clear if you don't know the situation? None of us "know the situation", we only know what we have read from ONE news source, yet we are all so quick to judge. All these rants are why lynch mobs are such a bad thing.....mob mentality has everyone ready to burn this church to the ground all from one tiny news story that is obviously telling one side of the story. Anyone with a lick of common sense should know there is more to this story than what we know so far, and would reserve judgment until they gt more information.

  • wolfpack32 Feb 28, 2013

    It is stories like this that reaffirm my decision not to go to church.

  • clayrock84 Feb 28, 2013

    I've read at least 200 comments about this happeningand only read one that defends the church. that alone tells the opinion of the public, and, this being Bible Belt, the Baptist stronghold. I don';t think I will ever attend another Baptist church. I do believe in the saying, You reap what you sow. In this case, I think the Acorn Baptist church has plainly shown they are not very Christian, or friendly, or even religious with the actions they have shown. If not for the Maness family, there would probably not even be an Acorn church. SHAME, SHAME, SHAME! This action makes me ashamed to say I'm religious at all. Phoowee on Acorn Baptist Church

  • raleighdurham Feb 28, 2013

    it's a shame that this church is going back on their word and breaking their agreement...not to mention, just being mean.

    BUT -- shouldn't the fracking issue have more of a presence on the front page than this???

  • parentoffour Feb 28, 2013

    Churches like this are the exact reason I do not step foot into them unless attending someone else's wedding or wake.

    So nice for them to show the family that gave them the land so long ago the famed christian charity.

  • shanemane1986 Feb 28, 2013

    Id get my land back and move the church.. That or have a few words with the board of trustees.. Or both...

  • 2beornot2be Feb 28, 2013

    Its not about the church, its the members. Many small churches are changing to this methodology since they do not value the commitments that the founding members families made. Its a new sheriff in town and yes, it always leaves a bad taste in your mouth! New members, new ways of doing things, and you can save that valuable plot for the NEW MEMBERS> What will people do if God says sorry, heaven is full (you reap what you sow)!!!

  • werte80s Feb 28, 2013

    They should let god make the decision,not members. Apparently god was not consulted.

  • pulstar40 Feb 28, 2013

    "I grew up in this church, as well as the rest of my family. Regardless of what is going on, THIS IS NOT A BAD CHURCH!!!!!! Don't judge this church on what is going on. Yes, they preach the Word of God and have awesome core values."

    Actions speak louder than words. Not a bad church? Well, yes I'm sure the building had nothing to do with this...just the shameful Trustees and the boneless pastor who is keeping silent.

  • daisy Feb 28, 2013

    @countrycitygirl, thank you for trying to speak on the church's behalf. You are the only one strong enough to speak up for this church on this message board.

    I feel what this church did was a really cold & distasteful choice. And I am glad this family brought this story to light. Maybe the Acorn church will take this experience and re-evaluate the path to righteousness they are on.

    I am glad another church stepped up in this family's hour of need. I hope the remaining members of this lady's family decide they would rather be buried by her side in this more accepting church's cemetary.

  • superman Feb 28, 2013

    The BOT iss bad enough but to have a minister who sits back and lets this happen is even worse. His hands may be tied but his feet arent. He could do the right thing and show his faith and resign. But then if he does that he wont get paid anymore. His love of money is greater than his love of God. It is all about the money.

  • tjszx2 Feb 28, 2013

    The original story posted stated that the plots were purchased, that is why so many people were under the impression that they were purchased in 19891 when they placed the markers.....this story has been changed so it no longer reflects that part of the story. IF that were an untrue statement made by WRAL then they should have ran a correction to the story verses just changing it. FYI, the changed version of the original story along with the 300 plus comments is still on this site.

  • ConcernedNCC Feb 28, 2013

    People, when a church owns a property, they have every right to limit the burials to members only. Otherwise, their members might be out trying to find somewhere else when they're full.

  • countrycitygirl Feb 28, 2013

    @jdo823, I also believe it says something about not judging others somewhere in the Bible as well, doesn't it? said it correctly, THE BOARD......not the whole church.

  • Smart Alex Feb 28, 2013

    Shame on you church.

  • Dreamin of Disney World Feb 28, 2013

    This was wrong.

  • luv2playsoccer Feb 28, 2013

    This should be about doing the RIGHT thing. Politics, membership, good church, bad church, full story, reserved or paid for should not come into play here. The right thing to do was to let the woman be buried with her family. What is gained by not letting that happen? Nothing.... Shame on everyone who had a hand in this.

Oldest First