MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - The historic Wetumpka First Baptist Church sanctuary is no more.
Friday, demolition crews tore down the sanctuary near the Bibb-Graves Bridge.
The church, which was completed in 1852, was damaged in 2019 when a tornado hit the downtown area. The insurance company claimed 67 percent of the building was damaged.
In recent weeks the building had become the center of controversy between parishioners.
The majority voted to tear it down because they felt it would cost too much to repair it.
Another group disagreed and threatened to sue to stop the demolition. The lawsuit was never filed. Attorney Keith Howard declined to say why but supplied the following quote to WSFA 12 News:
“It’s a sad day for the city and state. I am disappointed in the church leadership. I think it’s ironic the sanctuary is being torn down the day after HGTV announced plans to come to Wetumpka for a make-over.”
Church officials say they hope to use the insurance money towards rebuilding a multi-purpose building that was also destroyed by the tornado.