Church cleaning up from one storm soaked by another

By Ashley Mitchem, Morning traffic, news reporter, amitchem@wjxt.com
Christopher Yazbec, News editor, News4Jax.com, cyazbec@wjxt.com
Published On: Jan 14 2014 02:22:43 PM EST
Updated On: Jan 14 2014 06:17:19 PM EST

VIDEO: The North Main Street Baptist Church is cleaning up after the strong rains cause a tree to fall dropping tons of water into their building.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

A church on the Northside finds itself in cleanup mode after what some might call an act of God.

A tree fell and punched a hole in their roof during a storm on Saturday. North Main Street Baptist Church has been trying to patch the roof, but the ongoing rain has prevented it from fixing the holes.

There's a lot of water damage inside the church. The damage is not in the building where it holds services but in the building where it serves food, holds classes, and has bedrooms and bathrooms for ministry guests.

Nick Phoenix has been the pastor of the church for 17 years, and he said they've never dealt with anything like this before. He said they do not have insurance, so they are doing all the cleanup themselves.

IMAGES: Rain floods North Main Street Baptist

"All the ceilings are going to have to be repainted, all the ceilings will need to be redone," Phoenix said.

Water is covering the tile and carpet because a tree fell on the building. The tree punctured 24 holes in the roof Saturday but the earliest the church could try to patch the roof was Monday. Because of all the rain, however, the roof is still leaking.

"Water has just been pouring in and we've just been cleaning it up," Phoenix said. "We tried to patch it a little on Monday because we couldn't get a roofer on Sunday."

The church brings mission teams to Jacksonville to do good in the community, so it has several bedrooms and other facilities for guests. Those rooms are now soaking wet.

"We do free camps and block parties for inner city kids," Phoenix said. "We build wheelchair ramps and paint churches. We have a data training room for people trying to get jobs. We try to do a lot of outreach."

Phoenix hopes the water is cleaned up by this weekend because they have a ministry group coming to stay at the church.

The North Main Street Baptist Church has set up a fund for people to help them get back on their feet. The account is through VyStar, No. 703027857.

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