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Ames UMC floods

January 8, 2016

By Erik Alsgaard 
UMConnection Staff

Church services were cancelled Jan. 3 at Ames UMC in Bel Air after a pipe cracked and covered almost the entire church with several inches of water.

The Rev. Michael Parker, pastor, said a pipe in a hot water heater cracked sometime after a Watch Night Service that ended early on Jan. 1. The heater is located in a utility closet in the church’s fellowship hall which is only separated from the Sanctuary by a folding partition.

The church has insurance, Parker said, and church leadership and insurance adjustors are currently assessing the damage.
Because the church is built all on one level, water spread everywhere. In a photo Parker posted to his Facebook page, water can be seen covering the entire sanctuary. He wrote that all of the pews had been damaged. Only the prayer room was spared, which Parker said was “very interesting.”

Because furniture and other fixtures sat in water for at least two days, most of that is a total loss. Water also damaged many of the interior walls of the church and they will need to be fixed, too. All the flooring will have to be removed.

Parker expects the church to be out of its space for at least the next month. He says that prayers are needed most and that the church is looking into setting up a fund to receive any donations.

“I want to thank everyone in the connection for their prayers and support,” Parker said. “I’ve seen the connection come alive in the past 72 hours. I’ve received e-mails and text messages from all over the United States. Thank you.”

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