Church congregation positive despite destructive fire - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Church congregation positive despite destructive fire

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TUSCALOOSA - AL -

   Fire investigators believe lightning hit the steeple then set the roof of the Unity Baptist Church on fire.  A church member captured the fast moving flames on his cell phone. "Once it got up in the roof, it was old pine you know its been here so long and they couldn't stop it," said Doug Rodenberry.  

   Doug Rodenberry watched the flames gut the sanctuary where he's worshipped since he was two years old.  The roof cave in and merely a few charred pews and speakers were visible.

   Rodenberry's mother, Gladys also came to the see the church she's attended for 50 years in ruins.  "Oh, I just want to cry. I just want to ask why. But, I heard doug. He says we're going to build it back and its going to be better."

    Pastor Gene Dockery says Unity means come together and that's what the congregation will do.  He believes the fact the church walls were left standing is a sign God has a bigger plan for his congregation. "We're going to work on this. This exciting in a way for us because we have such a great group here. This community is going to here more about Unity Baptist church."

    Church members hope to eventually hold worship in the adjoining Fellowship Hall, but it sustained some water and smoke damage  "that was probably three or four inches deep in water last night so it's a mess," added Rodenberry.

   Wednesday night's service will likely be held under a small pavilion on the church lot.

  

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