Mansfield church burns overnight, members hold Christmas service outside

The congregation of a Mansfield church didn’t let a fire stop them from having a Christmas service.

The Mansfield First Church of the Nazarene was destroyed after a fire broke out on Christmas Eve night. A burnt skeleton of the building and nativity scene are all that remained.

Fire investigators are trying to figure out what caused the fire. Church leaders tell Fox 4 they woke up Christmas morning to a phone call that their place of worship for decades was on fire.

Though some items were salvaged, church leaders believe the building will have to be knocked down. The community gathered outside, Christmas Morning, to hold an impromptu Christmas services, singing ‘Joy to the World’ despite the tragic circumstances.

Firefighters say no one was injured in the blaze. Arson investigators are still looking into the cause. Church leaders say they’re not sure what they’ll do next, but they’re getting a lot of support from the surrounding community.

“The church in general is not about a building, it's about unity, it's about serving our Lord and Savior Jesus

Christ, said Pastor Michael Murphy, “This is just a building, like I said. We're more than that, and we will get through this.”

Church leaders say the building has been around since the 1980s. They were in the process of renovating and getting a smoke alarm system installed, when the building caught fire.

Other churches nearby have called to offer support, food and a place to worship. Congregates are not sure of their plans for next week, but say they will worship outside again, if they have to.

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