Thursday storm damages Diboll-area church property

ANGELINA COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Severe winds brought down several trees and branches around Pine Grove Baptist Church, located off FM 1818, on Thursday night.

Luckily, no one was hurt during the storm, and the church building itself is only suffering from some new leaks in the roof. However, the church van and recreational volleyball net were not so lucky.

"Very thankful that it didn't get damaged anyway and we can still go to church on Sunday," Matthew Faircloth said.

Jamie Faircloth says she was out at dinner with her husband, Matt, who is pastor of the church, and her son when she received the call about trees being down.

"We were on our way home and one of our church members called us and said his son had drove by and saw some trees down. At first when he called and told us, we thought it was a joke until his voice changed and we got home and actually saw the damage. We were just overwhelmed," Jamie Faircloth said.

The cleanup began Friday slowly with their son pulling several branches away from the fallen trees. However, Jamie Faircloth says it could take much longer for the church to receive coverage from their insurance company.

According to KTRE Chief Meteorologist Brad Hlozek, the Beulah community received most of the rain in the area, about 2.5 inches. It may have been lightning or strong winds, but it's hard to explain how a seemingly small storm left such damage. However, Faircloth says it's a miracle the church is still standing.

"Just by the grace of God, you know, protected over it because it could've been a whole lot worse than what it was," Jamie Faircloth said.

Jamie Faircloth remains upbeat about the state of the church, even after the damage.

"A church is the people that come together to worship God. It doesn't necessarily have to be in a building. It can be held outside under a tent. But, right now, it's just a building. It can be repaired or replaced if needed," Jamie Faircloth said.

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