Pastor pledges to forgive after thief makes off with cash, electronics


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Just days before Christmas, a Wilmington church is left cleaning up after a break-in Tuesday night.

Covenant Church Pastor Jaime Mendez says a person broke into the education building and fellowship hall. The suspect entered through the windows, leaving broken glass scattered in the classrooms.

A computer, a television, and a bank bag with cash inside were stolen, Mendez said. The bank bag was returned empty to another church early Wednesday morning.

Mendez says he understands how things like this can happen.

“The immediate response is ‘how can somebody do that?'” Mendez said. “But honestly, people do that because they’re in a desperate place.”

He says the congregation was shocked, but not for long.

“Instead of dwelling on how bad this was, they rolled up their sleeves and they got to work,” he said.

Mendez has a message for the person who did this, and it may not be what you’d expect.

“We love them and we forgive them,” Mendez said. “If this a catalyst for that person to get to know our God, or to get to know our church, or to come worship with us that’s a win. That’s well worth any broken window or stolen item.”

As we get closer to Christmas, he says this serves as a reminder.

“That’s why we celebrate the Christmas season,” he said. “Because of the love we have already received.”

Mendez invites everyone in the community to come and worship with them, including the person who broke into the church.

The theft was reported to the Wilmington Police Department.

Categories: Local, New Hanover

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