19 August 2016 | Huis Ter Heide, the Netherlands [Nelske Verbaas] Pastor Wim Altink, President of the Netherlands Union posted a message of forgiveness on the Netherlands Union website after an overnight burglary at the Seventh-day Adventist Church headquarters in Huis Ter Heide was foiled by an effective alarm system and a rapid response by police and emergency services.
The burglars, who broke into the office in the early hours of Friday, 19 August, tripped the alarm system and then hid in the attic to try and avoid detection. Police located them using thermal imaging but as the burglars endeavored to escape they fell through the ceiling and got stuck between two walls. They, in turn, had to be rescued by the fire-brigade while a police helicopter circled overhead to prevent any further attempt at escape.
Staff who arrived for work Friday morning were grateful that nothing was stolen but were saddened by the considerable damage caused to the historic, listed building. Altink arrived at the scene around 5 am and reported that a wall had to be broken down to free, and then arrest, the two men. The ceiling was also damaged by their attempted escape.
Staff expressed their gratitude to the police and fire service for their rapid and efficient response. In a statement on their website they also expressed forgiveness to the burglars, prayed for them, and invited them to visit with them in one of their local churches “providing they promise to use the front door and only during opening hours.” [tedNEWS]
tedNEWS Staff: Victor Hulbert, director; Esti Pujic, editor
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