Two-Alarm Fire At West Side Church Extinguished
UPDATED: 10/22/2012 12:27 p.m.
CHICAGO (CBS) – Investigators were working Monday morning to determine the cause of an overnight extra-alarm blaze at a church in the Garfield Park neighborhood on the West Side.
Firefighters responded to reports of a blaze in the 3800 block of West Madison Street in the at about 1 a.m., according to Fire Media Affairs.
When they arrived on the scene, firefighters found the True Temple of Apostolic Faith church fully enveloped by flames, Fire Media Affairs said.
As Pastor Craig Ousely watched firefighters douse his church with water, all he could think of was his next service. For months, he’d been planning a major celebration.
“It was supposed to be Friday, we’d be celebrating 17 years,” Pastor Ousely said. “We’re going to have to look for another location. But we’re still going to have our service. This is not going to stop us.”
Now instead of celebrating, the 255 members of the church in the Garfield Park neighborhood will be looking for a new place to worship. Nearly every part of their church is charred after a fire consumed the building and collapsed the roof.
It’s a total loss.
“It hurts, it actually hurts,” church member Brenda Norfleet tells CBS 2’s Chris Martinez.
No one was injured in the nearly two hours fight to knock down the flames. As investigators now work to determine how the fire began, Pastor Ousely is working to find a new home for his congregation.
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya Reports