Mt. Pilgrim Church Fire

After a four-alarm fire destroyed the historic church last week, Mount Pilgrim Baptist Church has begun on the road to recovery.

Five adults escorted 45 daycare-aged children from inside the building that burned and no one was injured. Spirits were high on March 24 inside the Mount Pilgrim Family Life Center as the congregation held its first service since their sanctuary was burned.

“The spirit was great,” Rev. Frank Kennedy Sr. of Mount Pilgrim Baptist Church said. “We were worshiping and praising God and lifting Jesus. And so we will be continuing to do that.”

The 65-year-old church went up in flames Thursday, March 21, around 9:30 a.m. leaving the church and its daycare a total loss.

“All operations are out of the life center and we thank God for giving us a place that we can come in and continue to feel at home in our worship,” Kennedy Sr. said.

Now that the smoke has settled, neighbors are reaching out with helping hands from all directions.

“We are believing with you knowing that all things work together for good for those who love God,” Rev. Schmitt Moore of Bethel Baptist Church said. “So we are expecting some great things to happen and come out of this tragedy and we’ll be here to support you.”

Two local churches are taking donations to give to Mount Pilgrim so that the money can go towards the church’s greatest needs.

“We often like to give other people the opportunity to give,” Rev. David E. Gay Jr. of Beulah Baptist Church said. “And so we will do that for the membership who want to give and then we will go ahead and match that to Pastor Kennedy and his congregation.”

Rev. Kennedy Sr. said he’s overwhelmed by the amount of love his congregation has been shown since the fire. He said the church has felt every thought, donation and prayer.

“We are grateful for those who have been reaching out to us,” Kennedy Sr. said. “And we are reaching back and we are thankful that God is putting them in our life and in our ministry to reach out, to help us continue on to do the work of the kingdom.”

If you would like to give a donation to Mt. Pilgrim Baptist Church you can mail it to them. Their address is 128 39th St. East, Tuscaloosa, AL 35405.

“It’s a blessing to have friends because we realize no man’s alone,” Kennedy Sr. said. “We need one another.”

An exact cause of the fire has not been determined, but it is not believed to be suspicious.

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