Lutheran Church damaged by fire

Posted December 27, 2012 at 10:07 am

By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
Northeast News
December 27, 2012

For the second time in less than a month, a Northeast church has been heavily damaged by an early morning fire.

Fire crews were called to the Lutheran Church of Our Redeemer at 7th and Benton at around 2:30 this morning and when they arrived, they found the sanctuary of the church engulfed in flame. At one point the fire was so intense that firefighters exited the building since it was thought flames were in a basement area under the sanctuary. That turned out to not be the case and firefighters quickly brought the blaze under control. The roughly 90-year-old building sustained heavy damage, according to Pastor Brad Zirkel, but he remained undeterred from the church’s mission.

“Congregations aren’t really about bricks and mortar, they’re about people,” Zirkel said. “We’ll be here this Sunday to continue to spread the word of Christ to this community.”

According to church parishioner Sean Chancellor, investigators have initially determined the blaze was accidental and started in the sanctuary near the organ. Photos by Michael Bushnell