Neighbors in Wilson County are planning to take legal action against a church known to worship inside a tent. Global Vision Bible Church has been in the middle of controversy when it comes to excessive noise. A separate lawsuit has also been filed against the church for zoning violations.
From across the street, to a mile away, neighbors told News 2 their daily lives are disrupted. They explained they can hear sermons inside their homes, over their televisions, and that their children are losing sleep during the school week.
“Windows are up, doors are shut, and we can hear the noise inside our homes, and it feels hostile…probably the most upsetting thing is hearing him angrily casting out demons from people in his congregation.”
According to WKRN, This neighbor wishes to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation. However, she showed News 2 videos of the sermons she can hear from her backyard.
“Unfortunately, some people are concerned about speaking out, but enough people have been putting up with it for so long, we wanted to take some action,” Philip Berg said
Berg said he is one of the dozens planning to file a noise nuisance lawsuit against Global Vision Bible Church. This comes after over 2,000 people signed an online petition for a noise ordinance. Currently, there isn’t one in Wilson County.
Meanwhile, the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office has been inundated with complaints. Since last June, the sheriff’s office has received more 440 noise complaints against the church.
“I can’t help the fact that we’ve done everything we can to minimize the sound but it still carries a little bit, we can’t soundproof the whole thing, it’s a tent for Pete’s sake,” Greg Locke said during an April 26 sermon.
Back in March, the church purchased a new tent that should be more “sound-proof.” However, neighbors said there hasn’t been a drastic improvement.
“Well, at the end of the day we just want to peacefully enjoy our homes, it’s nothing personal against the church or pastor we just want peace and quiet and not be subjected to a booming bass, and yelling voices day after day,” Berg said.
“It’s a mess no one wants to pick a fight, no one wants a fight, especially in their home or where they are living. We are to a point where we are considering moving,” he added.