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.

News stories

Related Stories

Resources

Sign up for our newsletter!

umnews-subscriptions
Disaster Relief
Caton Darling, 17, secures a tarp over the roof of his family’s home in Lake Charles, La., after Hurricane Laura toppled trees that damaged the roof.

Amazing grace comes in many ways for storm survivors

Hurricane Laura destroyed churches, homes and businesses but failed to drown the United Methodist spirit of caring.
Mission and Ministry
A Coast Guard Sector Ohio Valley Shallow Water Response Team rescues nine people and one dog Sept. 16, 2020, near Navarre Beach, Fla., after they were stranded by Hurricane Sally. U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Sector Ohio Valley Shallow Water Response Team.

Churches pick up after Sally

Hurricane brought strong winds, torrential rain to west Florida and south Alabama.
Mission and Ministry
Wildfires burn during a mid-August night near Susanville, Calif. A series of wildfires has destroyed more than 30,000 acres of land around Susanville. Photo by Doug Magill, U.S. Army.

Fires, coronavirus complicate Western disaster relief

After a hurricane or tornado, church disaster relief teams and volunteers typically spring into action. Such a response isn’t possible in wildfires.