According to the Eagle Lake Volunteer Fire Department, the fire began in the sanctuary.
Source: Thomas Parker
WARREN COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -
A Warren County church went up in flames Sunday afternoon after being struck by lightning. The building was a total loss, but members of the congregation say they will rebuild.
Eagle Lake Baptist Church, located on Highway 465 in Vicksburg, caught fire around 3 p.m. Sunday. According to the Eagle Lake Volunteer Fire Department, the fire began in the sanctuary and when fire crews arrived on scene, flames and smoke were showing.
Bill Parker, Chief of the Eagle Lake Volunteer Fire Department and a member of the church, said the large attic space and wind blowing into the space was a major factor in battling the blaze. The church did not have a sprinkler system.
"It's got a vaulted ceiling and we had problems getting up there. When we did get to it, it fell in on us and we had to back out and try to stop the fire. But it was progressing so fast with the wind blowing that we never could get in front of it," explains Chief Parker.
A church member said the church has about 80 or 85 members, but no one was in the church at the time of the blaze. Members went to another church in the community Sunday.
"You can't say frustrated because there's always a plan for something. So, God's apparently got a different plan for us. We've been growing so much, so maybe we just needed to expand our walls a different way," states Children's Church Director Mary Beth Evans.
According to the church's Facebook page, it was founded in 1984.
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