‘Lift us up so we will know that there is a tomorrow’: Eden church members remain faithful after fire

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EDEN, N.C. (WGHP) — A community is dusting itself off from the ashes after one of their churches burned down over the weekend.

House of Prayer For All People in Eden went up in flames Sunday morning, destroying all of it.

The pastor of the church is now saying he and his congregation are standing on faith that better days are ahead.

“I cried about it. And when I saw it, it broke my heart even more,” Pastor Javon Washington explained.

“The house of prayer is my way of life. That’s my life,” said Theron Mincey, who attends the church.

Tears have been shed, and lives have been changed, but their faith remains unshaken.

“Lord take care of thy people. Bless thy people. Lift us up so we will know that there is a tomorrow,” said Stanley Woodley, a fellow pastor at the Greensboro branch.

Investigators still trying to piece together what could have started the fire.

“Sometimes you have to have a downfall in life. That downfall, you can look for better things ahead,” Mincey said.

For those who loved this church, seeing it like this has been a tough reality to swallow.

“When I was born, my mother and father put my name on the house of prayer role. I’m now 65 years old, and I’m rooted and grounded in the house of prayer,” Mincey explained.

Mincey has worshiped inside a number of House of Prayer churches from Georgia to this location in Eden. Now, he reflects on his last service inside what’s left of this building.

“We had a glorious time praising and serving the almighty God,” he said.

FOX8 was there as people in the community stopped to lend a helping hand at the scene.

“If your congregation needs a place to meet during your transition time, we would love to find a way to make that work, for you to be able to share our building,” said Pastor Doug Diamond from First Church of the Brethren.

“Listen, we do thank you for the extension of love that you’re showing at this moment. God bless you,” Woodley replied.

The one uplifting symbol that remains seemingly untouched at the site is the angel: a testament to their unshaken faith.

“We’re holding our heads up high…any other house of prayer member who sees this interview, hold your head up high, and we’re going to stay in faith, love and unity,” Washington said.

The congregation will start rebuilding once the investigation is over.

United House of Prayer For All People has more than 100 locations nationwide. About a dozen of them are spread out across the Triad.

That’s where the roughly 15 members will be able to continue worshipping.

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