Pastor Joseph D. Johnson, of New Linwood Baptist Church of Columbus, watched his livelihood of nine years literally go up in flames early Tuesday morning, when a fire destroyed his church.
"Everyone is devastated, everybody is trying to figure out what is going on, especially in our area because of all the fires, we don't want to narrow it down to New Linwood, but we are concerned about our neighbors," Johnson said.
The flames also destroyed a vacant house behind the church and caused an exposure fire in the attic of the neighboring home.
Johnson and the 25-member congregation made do with what they had and scheduled a prayer conference call for their Sunday worship.
"We had some people call in from across the country to share with us this morning and we just gave a little plan to move forward in keeping us together. We know the enemy is trying to divide us, but we won't let that happen," Johnson said.
Chairs, pews and a sound system including, drum sets, keyboards and amps were only some of the items lost in the fire.