Church members mourn after fire burns building

Posted by: Melissa McKinney - bio | email

REELTOWN, AL (WSFA) - All is quiet at Pentecost United Methodist Church as smoke continues to rise from the ashes. But just a few yards away members gather mourning the church many have attended their whole life.

"I grew up here and I started here in the 1970s," says Julie Rodgers. It's where Rodgers got married. And it's a place of comfort for Lisa Morgan who lives right across the street.

"I sit on the foot of my bed and I look at the church when I do my prayers. So last night when I did my prayers I had no idea it would be the last time I could look and the church not be there," adds Morgan.

Investigators say the flames broke out around 12:30 Wednesday morning. They believe faulty wiring dating back to the 1940s may have caused the fire.

"It was like a part of me was dying here because the church has meant so much," adds Morgan.

It's the first congregation Bob Bachant has ever pastored. "The overwhelming sense of loss hits you immediately," he says.

Church members say this isn't the first time tragedy has struck their congregation. The original building built in the 1830s also burned in a fire. The second was destroyed by a tornado, and now with this fire, church members say they're focusing on the good.

"God can bring our little church back to us," says Morgan.

Church services will be held outside Sunday next to the burned building.

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