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DENVER — It was gone in a flash.
A trailer, loaded with sound equipment, banners, tables and other equipment used to help rebuild lives, disappeared from the parking lot behind the Denver Dream Center offices, September 11.
A church member reached out to Contact 7 to get the word out about the theft.
Pastor Bryan Sederwall, AKA Pastor B, said the theft wouldn’t stop the church from its mission, which is to rescue, rebuild and restore lives.
“We've learned that interruptions become invitations,” Pastor B said while hosting a fun afternoon barbecue Friday for 50 community corrections inmates and dozens of University of Colorado students, at Columbus Park.
“Whoever stole the Dream Center’s trailer, they stole from the wrong people,” said one of the inmates.
The barbecue is just one of the Dream Center’s efforts to help men who have gone astray, transition back into society.
“It’s healing. It’s therapeutic. It’s fun,” another inmate said.
That effort took a hit earlier this month when a thief stole the trailer.
“You can see it hasn’t stopped us,” Pastor B said. “We go MacGyver style. We get creative and we just figure it out as we go.”
Pastor B says bringing Community Corrections inmates together with college kids, who volunteer in the community, is a learning experience for both groups.
“Having a conversation with somebody that’s covered in tattoos or doesn’t look like you, it’s awkward for most people,” he said. “So if we get out here, play basketball or throw water balloons at each other, these guys will sit down and share their stories. We try to build those relationships.”
While watching inmates and students take turns on a water slide, and after taking a few turns herself, substance abuse counselor Caroline Chadima told Denver7 that events like this are therapeutic.
"The guys are in treatment 8 hours a day, every day except Sunday," she said. "They work hard, and we just wanted to have a nice end of year picnic for them and go get dirty."
Pastor B said a major donor has issued a challenge and will match the first $10,000 contributed to the church for a replacement trailer and equipment.
Click on this link to contribute: https://www.denverdreamcenter.org/
"We're excited to see what will happen out of this," he said. "We've been telling people it's not a setback, it's a setup."
UPDATE: Church member Jennifer Fragua told Denver7 that the missing trailer was found early Friday evening in West Denver.
She said it appears that someone tried to paint over the Denver Dream Center logo.
No word yet, on whether any of the equipment inside has been recovered.