110 W. New York Ave.
DeLand, FL 32720
By Jen Horton
posted Jul 17, 2013 - 4:42:19pm
Stetson Baptist Church is cleaning up from an early-morning two-alarm fire July 17 that damaged an office and workroom, and destroyed equipment and supplies.
"In Isaiah 61, third verse, it says, and I'm paraphrasing, that God brings beauty from the ashes," Pastor Dan Glenn said. "We're sort of claiming that passage right now."
Glenn got a call at about 4 a.m. Wednesday, reported that there was a fire at the church, and that the DeLand Fire Department and DeLand Police Department were already on the scene.
The alarm had sounded at 1:56 a.m., and the Fire Department arrived at the church at 1025 W. Minnesota Ave. at 2:03 a.m.
"We really want to thank the DeLand Fire Department," Glenn said.
DeLand Deputy Fire Chief Ron Snowberger said a preliminary investigation indicates the fire started from an electrical source.
The building was unoccupied at the time and there were no injuries, Snowberger said. The worst damage was in an elementary school office, but the fire penetrated into the attic, and there is smoke damage elsewhere in the building. The sanctuary was spared.
Snowberger said if the church hadn't had a fire alarm system that notifies the Fire Department, the entire building could have been lost.
"It was a strong fire," Glenn said. "It burned a lot of equipment and supplies ... it is a great loss for us."
Sunday and Wednesday services will continue, and the Stetson Baptist School will be open in the fall, as usual, Glenn said.
"We know God has a plan for our church," Glenn said. "Even in difficult times, God shines through."
Estimates for the time it will take to repair the structure have varied from a few weeks, to a few months, Glenn said.
"It's just too early to tell," he said.
"We appreciate the thoughts and prayers of the community, of them remembering us. We'd love to have the community come and share our journey," Glenn said.
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