Church fires: Damage, recovery, prevention

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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Mission and Ministry
Over 30,000 pounds of food provided by Feed America First is distributed to those in need in Wilson County, Tenn. Lebanon First United Methodist Church in Lebanon, Tenn. was able to restock its food pantry as well as help provide a week’s worth of food to over 350 families. Pictured are John Stephens and Laura Headley, members of Lebanon First United Methodist Church. Photo by the Rev. Ryan Bennett.

Prayers, donations help in aftermath of storms

March storms left behind lots of damage, but because of COVID-19, church leaders are urging safety first, cleanup later.
Mission and Ministry
Donna Barnett and daughter Jessica Garrett are hugged and given a prayer by Lindsey Holloway and Melody Montgomery Wednesday, March 4, 2020, in Cookeville, Tenn., after a tornado touched down earlier in the week. © Shelley Mays/The Tennessean – USA TODAY Network via Imagn Content Services, LLC.

Retired pastor’s home lost to tornado

United Methodists in and around Cookeville, Tennessee, among those suffering from March 3 tornadoes.
Disaster Relief
Volunteer Sumant Joshi clears tornado debris in front of East End United Methodist Church in Nashville, Tenn. Photo by Mike DuBose, UM News.

Tennessee tornadoes take lives, damage churches

At least 24 deaths were reported after tornadoes swept through Nashville and other parts of the state and the storms heavily damaged at least three United Methodist churches.