Roof ripped off Cherryville church during storms

Many are still picking up the pieces after Wednesday night’s wicked weather.

On Thursday, the pastor of a Cherryville church whose roof was torn off as he prepared for Ash Wednesday services is thankful not all was lost.

The heavy winds lifted the roof from one side of the church to the other.

“All of a sudden the glass just starts crumbling and coming down, John Propst said.

Propst said he was getting ready to deliver the Ash Wednesday message to his congregation at Saint John’s Lutheran Church in Cherryville when the heavens opened up.

“I was standing right under where it just kind of exploded, the stained glass window,” he said.

Glass shattered around the pulpit and on the backside of the building. Half of the roof blew off, the winds carrying it to the opposite side and rain started pouring in, soaking the church’s archive room.

“It’s heartbreaking. You can see all these have been damaged, they’re all wet,” Propst said.

Ink smeared on pieces of the church’s century old history.

“All of these documents are just soaking wet,” he explained.

Water-logged church directories and stains on the back of an old picture.

“These are the archives the things that you can’t replace. That’s kind of a tragic situation. We have a little sick church right now and so everybody’s coming together to take care of our wounded church,” Propst said.

But if you look closely, there are signs of hope all around.

“The church is the people. It’s not the facility, so the people the church will be together,” he explained.

They plan to hold that Ash Wednesday service that was canceled by the chaos Wednesday night – and the pastor just might have already written the message for his next sermon.

“God does shower hope amid the storms,” he said.

A local funeral home has offered to host church services for the congregation. They’ll be having Ash Sunday service this weekend at the funeral home.