Historic Graham church destroyed by fire

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GRAHAM, N.C. -- A church that officials said was more than half a century old was found destroyed by fire Sunday morning in Graham.

Officials said an accidental electrical fire started at the New Mount Zion Congressional Church at 414 E. Harden St. around 11 p.m. Saturday.

Paul Dark, the Reverend of the church, said he was devastated to receive a phone call late Saturday night about the church being in flames.

He said they had just gotten the taxes and property ownership straightened out and had finished remodeling the bathroom, when an electrical fire broke out.

"The church has been through so much at this time, going through so many different changes," he said. "Then to find the church was up in flames and we have nowhere to worship."

Dark said the church is not insured, so he hopes the community will offer a helping hand so they can eventually rebuild. The church had about 25 members.

He also said he is talking with the mayor of Graham to find another place where church members can worship.