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Tornado fails to stop Claremont church
wire reports
November 29, 2010
3 MIN READ TIME

Tornado fails to stop Claremont church

Tornado fails to stop Claremont church
wire reports
November 29, 2010

When an F-2 tornado tore

through Claremont in October, First Baptist Church took a hit.

The tornado, which came

through Oct. 26 around 7:30 p.m. with winds up to 110 miles per hour, blew away

the church’s steeple, tore off part of the roof and damaged every Sunday School

classroom.

Part of the roof ripped off the top of First Baptist Church in Claremont formed a cross with its trusses. Members expressed thanks for God’s miracle in not hurting anyone during the storm that came through the area Oct. 26.

“First Baptist Church of

Claremont is on the way to recovery,” said Dennis J. Richards Sr., pastor, in a

letter. “It may take us as long as six weeks but we have a place to worship in

our fellowship hall. We have a closer knit fellowship because of the

storm.”

Volunteers from North

Carolina Baptist Men responded by cleaning up debris and putting a temporary

tarp on the roof. Baptist Men helped others in the community as well.

Winds jerked locked doors of

the church open exposing the sanctuary to the storm. But there were only a few

loose pews, some carpet damage, broken inside doors, and broken foyer

tiles. Dehumidifiers were brought in to dry out the water-damaged carpet

and other items. There was much damage left on the grounds and on a walkway

connected to the church.

On the walkway was left a

perfect cross formed out of the wooden beams which were ripped off the

roof. Members were back in church the following Sunday, meeting in the

basement.

A local television station

reported the steeple was split into at least three pieces; one piece is still

missing.

“It’s absolutely amazing. It

just makes my heart break because of the love we have at this church and the

outpouring of fellowship that we have, and the praise that we have,” said

Richards to a local television station.

The church’s Oct. 28

Facebook status highlights some of the damage:

“Thanks be to God that no

one was hurt or killed in the Claremont tornado! Our church building did

sustain damage though. We lost our steeple and part of our roof, but God gave

us a new cross! Part of the roof trusses that blew out made a perfect cross

that God hung over our railing, reminding us that he is still in control!”