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Congregants prayerful after church left burned in Delta aftermath

Posted at 9:18 PM, Oct 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-13 07:09:14-04

Hunkering down with Hurricane Delta coming in, Pastor Leo Franklin gets a phone call which essentially tells him that his building, which houses Father’s Embrace Worship Center, has taken a fiery hit from the storm.

“And a neighbor called, told me the building was on fire and I told him to call 9-1-1,” recalls Franklin. “I called them as well. From what I’m told 15 minutes later they were here, working on the fire.”

Pastor Franklin wasn’t able to see the damage until mid-morning Saturday. And what he saw of the place on Railroad Street that’s been his congregation’s home for the past 7-1/2 years nearly broke his heart.

“Honestly I felt like one of my children were injured,” he says. “Just seeing the building that we had worked on so hard, it really broke my heart. I experienced some depression, wondering about the future.”

Early reports suggest the fire may have started in a wall heater that had been covered up years and years ago, but never disconnected. And as he waits on the official report, Pastor Franklin says he and his flock will carry on.

“We will continue to do, preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, and exhibit the spirit and love of God. Continue to do that the best way we know how.”

One more thing. Backing up what Pastor Franklin said, words strongly suggesting that a church is about way more than just a building; it is indeed about the people.

On Sunday, Franklin called members of his congregation, and they gathered and held a worship service.

They thanked the Lord. They embraced each other. All in gratitude that they survived the storm.

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