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Birmingham church offers counselling for members after knife attack

The congregation of a Birmingham church that turned into a scene of a stabbing attack on Sunday have met for updates and encouragement.

Members of the New Jerusalem Apostolic Church in Birmingham held a service of fellowship and thanksgiving following the incident only a day earlier where a man walked into the Sunday church service and launched a knife attack on three members of the congregation.

Many at the service had been there on Sunday and the church is now offering counselling services for them.

Two of the three individuals injured in the attack, Elders Karl and Jorge George, were there. Adam Brookes, the third man injured in the attack, spoke to the church via Video Link, having been discharged from the hospital just hours before. The three men were applauded for their bravery by the church.

Addressing the congregation, Bishop Melvyn Brookes, Adam Brookes' father, encouraged the church and shared the latest updates on the incident.

He commended the quick action of the ushering team and the members of the congregation who showed restrained the suspect until police arrived.

He also noted the commendation from the police of how the church managed the situation.

The congregation were given a chance to ask questions and express their feelings about the incident. Counsellors were also available to speak with attendees as part of the support program.

In a statement the church said: "The atmosphere was transparent, heartfelt, and very positive, and there was a palpable resolve that this incident would not affect the community focused work, the open arms and open doors policy the church has for the community and the family fellowship that exists in the church."

The church said it has launched a review of its security protocol, although "there's no indication that the church could have done anything to prevent or pre-empt this attack".

All the victims of the attack are out of hospital and none of their injuries were life-threatening.

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