Fire tears through Ebenezer Evangelical Christian Church in Frankford

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- A fire tore through a Frankford church Monday evening.

Surveillance footage shows the smoke rising past the church steeple and firefighters on the roof at Ebenezer Evangelical Christian Church at Darrah and Harrison around 6 p.m.

Neighbors spotted the smoke.

"I see the smoke, and I said 'Oh my God! The church is burning,'" said Evelyn Holly.

Neighbor Maria Reveron saw it, too.

"It was a lot of smoke, and it was a horrible fire. It was very sad, very sad," she said.

Messiah Wright works nearby and was heading home.
People running, I saw the fire department come, and I was like 'that's a shame' because I always see people coming and fix this place up, and try to get better, get prayer, some good insight because it's kind of a rough neighborhood," Wright said.

Firefighters arrived to flames burning through the roof.

With Chopper 6 HD overhead, you could see some of the damage from up above.

Inside, the scope of the destruction was apparent.

"The majority of the rooftop over our main altar was affected, and then the water damage, broken windows and everything," said Rev. William Garcia.

Garcia explained this is a newer congregation of about 100 people that have been in this community for about three years, but the church has been standing here for many years prior.

Neighbors hope they will reopen.

"It helped a lot of people. A lot of people," he said.

What the future holds is unclear.

"We know we are going to have to rebuild. We're not going to abandon what God gave us, but what that looks like right now...we don't know," Garcia told Action News.

No serious injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
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