There is nothing left of the New Hope Community Church in Junction City. Lightning sparked a blaze in the early morning hours Saturday, destroying the church that had been standing since 1889.
"We never expected to be in a position where we looked to get help from somebody else. We always thought that as a church we could minister to others," said Pastor Erv Volkmann.
At 3.45 Sunday morning, firefighters were called to the church about two miles north of Junction City, but they weren't able to get there in time to save the building from burning to the ground.
The church had recently been remodeled and was scheduled for a rededication ceremony within the month, but despite the feelings of frustration, the pastor says his congregation is considering this an opportunity and not a loss.
"God is still God regardless of if this happened and this isn't meant for defeat. This is meant to somehow bring us together, somehow strengthen us," said Volkmann.
Volkmann says his congregation is already working on plans for a new church.
Church members met for service Sunday at the regular time at the Eau Plaine Community Center.
According to the Junction City Fire Department, lightening ignited about a half dozen other fires Friday night in the Stevens Point area.