Fire Guts Bronx Church; Congregation Vows to Rebuild

An early morning blaze has ravaged a decades-old Bronx church, but the congregation held services today in the parking lot, promising to come back bigger and stronger than ever.

The Fire Department said the call about a fire at the Love Gospel Assembly on Grand Concourse came in around 1:30 a.m. Sunday.

The blaze went to four alarms before being put under control around 3:30 a.m. 

Pastor Ronald Bailey says the church will continue with its ministry and the food programs it runs.  Damen Heyward, a church member, said he has faith good things will come from the event.

“The spirit of god does not die.  Though our church went up in flames, we’re still on fire for the Lord," he said.

“It was devastating at first but you know what? Again, we’re going to rebuild and we’re going to have a bigger church and a better church.  This is victory for us not defeat," said Saori Soto, another member.

Hundreds of congregants gathered at the church's parking lot today  to reaffirm their commitment to rebuilding the church, which has been at that location for more than 30 years.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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