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Wellborn Church Fire Brings Congregation Even Closer Together

By: Jennifer Cavazos
By: Jennifer Cavazos

55-year old Lillian Benford has been a member of the Salem Missionary Baptist Church all of her life. Her father was a deacon in the early 50's and Benford was also married in this small wooden church.

"This is home to me. It was sad when this happened, but things like this happen. Its kind of like losing a member and you have to adjust to it, but you never get over it," says Benford.

Two weeks ago, the 119 year old church was burned completely inside due to an electrical fire...ruining everything from equipment to books used during the services.

"It was really devastating to see that our church was burning from top to bottom," says Pastor Cedric Goodman.

Pastor Goodman says his congregation is staying strong in their faith. Through the years, they've had their ups and downs, but they've always persevered.

"We have great faith in God and we understand it could have been worse. This could have been during a time when we were having services or young people were here," says Goodman.

With the congregation growing, this was a setback to this family of worshipers but they say faith in God will prevail.

"I see us coming back, coming up again. We're down now, but by the grace of God we're going to come back up," says Benford.

Like anything in life, memories are precious -- and these members are holding on to the memories of the past and look forward to what lies ahead.


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