YAPHANK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A more than 160-year-old Long Island church has been gutted by a fire that blazed through the sanctuary hours before Sunday’s service. But congregants gathered and gave thanks that no one was hurt.
The Suffolk County Police Department said investigators have determined there was nothing criminal about Sunday’s fire at the Yaphank Presbyterian Church. It was reported around 2 a.m.
The Rev. Glorya Johnson said the flames left only the walls standing in the sanctuary of the 1851 building. Stained-glass windows were destroyed.
Johnson said it appears a heating-system problem sparked the blaze in the wooden church. It has about 50 members.
Sunday morning’s service was held in another building on the church property.
Police said graffiti found on an exterior wall of the church is not related to the fire. The graffiti had been there for at least two days, and similar vandalism was found on two other nearby buildings in Yaphank.
You May Also Be Interested In These Stories
- Nassau Residents Demand Long-Awaited Traffic Light At Dangerous Garden City Intersection
- Massive Sinkhole Opens Up On Upper West Side
- De Blasio: ‘Very Strong’ Police Presence For Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade
- Officer Injured As Police Pursuit Ends With Violent Crash In Bergen County, New Jersey
(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)