Church fires: Damage, recovery, prevention

A Dec. 22, 2012, fire destroyed the sanctuary, office area and part of the fellowship hall of Gideon Grove United Methodist Church, Stokesdale, N.C. Photo by the Rev. Nancy Rankin.
A Dec. 22, 2012, fire destroyed the sanctuary, office area and part of the fellowship hall of Gideon Grove United Methodist Church, Stokesdale, N.C. Photo by the Rev. Nancy Rankin.

During 2012 and early 2013, fire destroyed or damaged more than a dozen United Methodist church properties across the United States. Arson was the cause of at least five fires. The insured property value ranged from $10,000 to $3.3 million, but several churches lacked adequate insurance to cover full replacement costs. This special news series reported on the damage from those fires, the response to the affected congregations and what churches can do to protect themselves.

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