In the wake of the deadly shooting at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, a fire at a predominately black church in North Carolina has been determined to be arson. NBC reports the fire was set at Briar Creek Baptist Church in Charlotte; it is currently being investigated to determine if the arson was a hate crime.
The fire caused about $250,000 in damage; no injuries were reported.
It took over 75 firefighters to control the blaze that broke out after midnight on Wednesday (June 24).
The church sanctuary survived the fire, but the ceiling collapsed and an area that was used for children’s summer camp was destroyed.
Briar Creek Pastor Mannix Kinsey told reporters that the congregation forgave the culprit.
"Buildings can be repaired, they can be built over. This is the opportunity for God to touch the hearts of individuals,” Kinsey said.
Publication date: June 25, 2015