Church targeted by thief in NW Houston

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The thief ransacked the church and made off with thousands of dollars worth of stuff. (KTRK)

It broke their hearts but not their spirits. On this Palm Sunday that's the message tonight from members of a northwest Houston Church that was burglarized on Friday. The thief ransacked the place and made off with several items.

The thief stole thousands of dollars worth of stuff, but that didn't stop this church from worshiping today.

This Sunday morning's message at the City of Faith Church - 'Thou shall not steal.'

"My heart was broken but apparently this guy didn't get the memo," said Matilda Johnson, the pastor's wife.

"He doesn't even realize that it's wrong targeting of all places -- a house of worship," said Pastor Sabra Johnson. "When someone breaks into the house of God you'll know he'll break into the shop next door or someone's house and that's what's concerning to us," said

But as the old saying goes -- God is always watching and so are surveillance cameras. The man can be seen casing out the church just before he smashes in the window. The glass shatters and he just climbs right in. He later comes out with a computer and leaves in his getaway bike. The suspect returned for more stuff.

"Initially he went this way which is our children's church," said Pastor Johnson.

And then the suspect ransacked the church offices.

"Same thing in here. The business off he did the same thing, went through the drawers and took cash from offering," he said.

He aslo got away with TV's and kids items that were for next Sunday's Easter program.

"This morning some of the children were asking about that but I said, 'it's OK. We don't have those things anymore, but we're going to make due with what we have,'" said Sister Johnson.

Sister Johnson says church leaders are using this unfortunate moment to teach the lesson of forgiveness.

"We can make horrible decisons," said Sister Johnson.

The pastor's sermon for Easter, he plans to talk about the thief on the cross. And the congregation has invited this thief back to the church, this time without the sticky fingers.

"I would hate for him to go to jail. If could just come to church to learn the word of God," said Sister Johnson.

The glass here as already been repaired. If you recognize the man in the surveillance footage you're being asked to call police.
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