SUMMERFIELD, N.C. (WGHP) — The steeple of Liberty Wesleyan Church in Summerfield was blown off by storm winds on Thursday.
Many parts of the Piedmont Triad were under a severe thunderstorm watch for most of the late afternoon and evening on Thursday. With the storms, came heavy rain and high winds.
At around 3:19 p.m. on Thursday, security footage from Liberty Wesleyan Church, provided by Senior Pastor Rev. Danny Janes, captures the moment the church’s steeple is dislodged from the roof and careens onto the ground below.
Rev. Janes reports that no one was attending the church at the time of the steeple collapsing. However, a closing ceremony for the church’s Vacation Bible School went on without delay three hours later.
“We are very fortunate that no one was here, so no one was hurt,” Janes said. “It could’ve been very different.”
What remains of the steeple still sits in two pieces on the grass. The church has minimal damage to the roof. Walking into the sanctuary, you wouldn’t even notice anything happened.
“Fearing the whole ceiling would collapse in the area below it, but everything looked fine there,” Janes said. “There was a sense of relief.”
The cross that stood atop the steeple is bent but still intact. It’s a metaphor to Janes.
“The cross of Jesus Christ has weathered many storms and many attacks and has always emerged intact,” he said.
Rev. Janes isn’t sure how long it will take to replace the steeple or how much it will cost. The church has filed an insurance claim.
The reverend isn’t worried about the money. His congregation continued donating, even when the church doors were closed during the pandemic.
“Our folks continue to be very faithful in their tithing and their giving, so we weren’t hurting in that area,” he said. “We were affected but not crippled by it. So hopefully it will be covered.”
The church will welcome members of the congregation for service on Sunday. All debris has been pushed to the side, so people won’t have trouble getting through the doors.