FLAT ROCK (WWJ) – Members of a local congregation are keeping the faith after a fire tore through their Flat Rock church on Thursday, leaving it in ruins.
The building itself is a complete loss.
WWJ’s Marie Osborne spoke with parishioners of New Hope Lutheran Church as they searched what was left of their spiritual home, looking for anything they could salvage.
Church pianist Andrea Ford said she’s heartbroken.
“My piano is completely melted. But, amazingly, they salvaged the music that was right next to it,” Ford said.
Ford, who was planning to get married in the church in just a couple of months, said the congregation has faced tougher challenges in the past. Afterall, she said, a church is the people not the building.
Eric Casab said he and his family visited the church for this first time for Wednesday evening services.
“I was here for this first time last night and absolutely fell in love with the church and was looking forward to coming back and bringing extended family,” he said. “(I) woke up to the news today and was completely devastated.”
One member found four brass candlesticks as she sifted through the charred rubble. She said she’ll have them all polished and ready for services.
“We’re gonna have our first service since this fire .. we’re gonna have it Sunday over at the Flat Rock City Hall. And that’s at 9:30 (a.m.). We’re going to do devotionals at 9:30. And, at 10:30, we’re right back in the game,” she said.
Some members believe the fire started in a flower-pot outside of the building that contained a smoldering cigarette.
The cause remains under investigation.