Members poised to begin rebuilding after fire destroys their historic church

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RUFFIN, N.C. — Members of Mt. Carmel United Methodist Church are sorting through their emotions and memories as they feel the effects from the unexpected loss of their sanctuary.

Late last week, a morning fire swept through the building so quickly that only the fellowship hall could be saved.

On Sunday, that’s where they hope to have worship services.

Until then, about 200 members are trying to deal with what happened.

On Tuesday afternoon, under the chill of a gray sky, a few of them stopped by to survey the damage.

Twisted metals, broken bricks and the frame of a steeple are strewn about the field where a stately church once stood.

This used to be Mt. Carmel.

Now, it’s debris.

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