Pastor following Marion church fire: ‘People have committed themselves to help rebuild’

Published: Sep. 14, 2023 at 3:39 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 14, 2023 at 5:33 PM EDT
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MARION, S.C. (WMBF) – A community is coming together to help a church in Marion rebuild after it was heavily damaged in a fire earlier this week.

Marion Fire Rescue crews were called just after 4 p.m. Tuesday to 520 Murray Street, which is the location of United Fellowship Church.

When they arrived at the nearly 70-year-old church, firefighters saw smoke pouring out of the roof.

Several fire agencies responded to a massive fire at Marion Household of Faith Church in Marion...
Several fire agencies responded to a massive fire at Marion Household of Faith Church in Marion on Tuesday.(Source: Marion Fire Rescue)

It took over 40 firefighters from different agencies several hours to get the fire under control.

Members of the church said that everything from the sanctuary down to the dining and kitchen were destroyed in the fire.

“There is no pulpit, there is no choir stand, everything is totally destroyed,” Bishop Patrick Chambers said.

MORE INFORMATION | Help United Fellowship Church Rebuild Following Fire

Chambers said the building was filled with memories from weddings, worship and even funerals.

“It serves as the arms for our community here. So many people have come to this place and received help,” Chambers explained.

One elder in the church, Evelyn Foxworth Meares, remembered the church’s humble beginnings, when it started off in a tent.

“I was here before the church started. I cam while we were still under the tent,” Meares said. “It was so sad to see it all go up in smoke.

But despite the loss, Chambers said he’s grateful for the outpouring of community support to help rebuild.

“Pastors are coming together, people have committed themselves to help rebuild the walls,” Chambers said. “Men are working right now even as we speak. They are coming together, that the walls of this church might be rebuilt.

Because the fire was at a church, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms responded to the scene and is investigating the cause and origin of the fire.

Meanwhile, Chambers said they’re determined to continue church services at the building.

The church is also reaching out to the community and asking for donations to help with the repairs.

A GoFundMe has been created if you would like to donate to the church.