Spokane church leaders committed to moving forward following fire

SPOKANE, Wash.– Monday started with the search for a new place to worship for some local pastors.

A fire Sunday at the New Community Church damaged the historic downtown building.

Fire Chief Brian Schaeffer told us this was an accidental fire, caused by electrical issues.

The congregation and several organizations will now have to find a new place to gather– at least for now.

Pastors say they are already on the hunt for a new space. They hope they can keep their gatherings in the same downtown area.

Luckily, the church was mostly empty since the fire broke out in the afternoon and services were over.

Pastor Kevin Longmeier says they had met on Sunday like they normally do. Workers had locked up and gone home.

However, there were people inside. They were in the Shalom Ministries space in the church’s downstair’s area.

Spokane Fire Chief Brian Schaffer says they were able to get them all out in time and nobody was hurt.

“We’re thankful that nobody was injured. We’re thankful that our building is still here and still standing,” Longmeier said.

A majority of the damage done to the church is on the inside and doesn’t come from the fire itself. It comes from all the water that was needed to put out the flames.

Even without a church to pray in right now, they’re still counting their blessings. They have already shifted their focus to the future.

“We spent the last couple of hours looking at plans, and we’re going to be contacting different local churches around here,” Longmeier said.

They’re committed to continuing to hold their services for people. It’s moments like this where they say they rely on faith the most.

“We try to be a community that trusts were in good hands and that what’s going to happen, is going to happen, and so we just allowed the professionals to do what they needed to do and we’ll take it as it comes,” Longmeier said.

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