ISAIAH 40:29-31

God gives power to the faint,
and strengthens the powerless.
Even youths will faint and be weary,
and the young will fall exhausted;
but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength,
they shall mount up with wings like eagles,
they shall run and not be weary,
they shall walk and not faint.

All of us at Hennepin Avenue United Methodist Church are deeply saddened by the tragic deaths in Sutherland Springs on Sunday. As people of faith who gather at church to pray, to worship God, and to give thanks and praise as a community, we may see ourselves in the 26 people who were killed at First Baptist Church.

We know that for the families and friends of those who died, and for other people who trust the promise of God’s presence and care, a tragedy like this one may test our faith. With deepest compassion, we pray for wisdom and insight as we wrestle with the confusion, grief, loneliness, and longing that follow such terrible losses. At the same time, we commit ourselves to prayerful reflection about how we can partner with God to heal a broken world.

As a large urban church, we are committed to doing what we can to implement practical precautions to secure our building so that all who enter our building are safe and secure. We are currently working with a security consultant and we have a safety and security plan. Our staff will continue to receive training on best practices. Yet as a house of worship, we will always open our doors to those who seek God. We will continue to bring our human frailty and vulnerability before God and each other. As we have done for over 140 years, we will persevere in the face of injustice, console one another through grief, and live our mission through bold outreach and service.

We join many people of many faiths who will arrive to their houses of worship this upcoming weekend with the tragedy of what happened in Texas weighing on their hearts. We will offer special prayers for the victims and their loved ones. We do so knowing that prayer is powerful, and that through God’s grace and mercy, God comforts us and moves us to become instruments of justice, of love, and of peace.

With prayers for peace,

Rev. Judy Zabel
Senior Pastor


Hennepin Avenue United Methodist Church’s mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. As an intergenerational worshiping community, we journey with open hearts to feel, open minds to learn, and a passion to serve.

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Sacred Journey at 8:30am
Traditional Worship at 10am


511 Groveland Ave.
Minneapolis, MN


Come as you are.