North Philly church robbed of its music

June 16, 2011 8:09:29 PM PDT
A North Philadelphia church has been robbed of its ability to make music and police are trying to hunt down suspects.

UPDATE: Since this story aired at Action News at 6, dozens of viewers have called the newsroom offering to replace the church's equipment. We have passed your messages along to the church. "It just hurts my heart," Reverend Verl Sewell said.

Reverend Sewell's heart sank when he arrived at his small storefront church this morning.

Overnight, burglars kicked in the side door and made off with the church's heart and soul.

"They stole our mics, they stole our keyboard, they stole the soundboard," Sewell said.

$10,000 worth of instruments and electronic sound components are gone.

Music is a central element of the services at the Greater Love Fellowship Ministries on Lehigh Avenue.

Reverend Sewell is lucky to count professional vocalists and musicians among his small flock and they raise the roof every Sunday.

"All music has a message, but gospel music has a message of healing, deliverance, and salvation," Sewell said.

Every Sunday, the doors are opened wide at the church and the music spills out onto the streets. People are drawn to it and join the service, but not this Sunday.

"I need a miracle within the next three days. Cause Sunday comes and a lot of people are going to be, 'where's the sound?'" Sewell said.

At the moment, it's in the hands of thieves.

This is not a wealthy congregation.

It took three years to acquire the sound system and it won't be easy to replace it.

Reverend Sewell says he needs to pray hard for the thieves and for a city where some people have lost respect for themselves and all that is sacred.