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Santa Fe community leans on its faith two days after deadly school shooting

The Santa Fe community is finding strength through prayer after a deadly school shooting at Santa Fe High School. Governor Gregg Abbott offered prayers and hugs to members of Arcadia First Baptist Church after attending a church service Sunday.

SANTA FE, Texas- A community crushed by the news of a deadly shooting at Santa Fe High School Friday morning is now finding strength in prayer. Hundreds of residents packed community churches Sunday, two days after the mass killing.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott offered prayers and hugs to members of Arcadia First Baptist Church. The church is located along Highway six, less than a mile-and-a-half from Santa Fe High School.

"How are you doing," asked Abbott of students who walked into the church. "You feeling okay?"

Some students told him they were doing or feeling better. Others said they're feeling worse, after learning more of their friends died in an ambush attack just before 7:30 a.m. Friday.

"It’s still hard to even think about it. I’m still speechless about it. It’s just hard" said Jonathan Folge as tears rolled down his face. "You know, I lost my best friend."

Folge was talking about his friend Kyle McLeod.

"And to sit right next to him and for him to not be there, it’s going to be hard," said Folge who is a freshman at Santa Fe High School.

Folge told KHOU 11 News he should have been in the art class with McLeod Friday morning. Folge explained he had finished his final exams, so he made arrangements with his art teacher to finish his project on his own. Folge was still asleep in his bed at his home when the 17-year old suspected shooter walked into the classroom McLeod was in and opened fire.

"And I just found that out yesterday. He didn’t share it with me," said mother Sheila Folge. "And I was just so thankful that he wasn’t there."

"Honestly, just scary thinking that someone that you go to school with every day can just show up to school and do this," said Jacob McDonald who knows the suspected shooter. "I played football with him every day. At practice, I would go against him."

McDonald wore his Santa Fe High School graduation gown to church service at Arcadia First Baptist. The church had planned to bless the graduating class during its annual "Senior Sunday" event.

"It’s just hard to think that everyone who lost their life will not be able to get this opportunity," said McDonald who will go on to attend East Texas Baptist University.

"Just to think that someone that you wouldn’t suspect would do this, that means anyone can pretty much, anyone that you don’t suspect can also do something like this. It’s just a scary thing to think about."

Sunday, McDonald said all he could do is rely on his faith to see him through this tragedy. "I was praying that any family that was affected by this, that God will put his hand over their shoulders and just let them heal."

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