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Old 09-07-2011, 08:12 AM   #1
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Storm destroys tiny chapel, family hopes to rebuild

September 06, 2011 6:10 PM
Monday's severe storm destroyed a well-known landmark in Yuma County. A microburst is suspected of lifting the tiny chapel along Highway 95 off its foundation and slamming it into the ground 60 feet away.

The storm damaged the church “from the cross on top to the structure on the bottom,” said Cecil Pratt, whose father, Loren Pratt, built the church in honor of his late wife, Lois.

“The steeple was crushed, one wall is completely gone, and I seriously question the structural integrity of the three remaining walls.”

Strong winds also uprooted trees and destroyed the landscaping around the little church.

Cecil Pratt said his family learned of the destruction Monday afternoon when a fellow farmer called.

“We got a call from friends. They were scrambling to get as much as they could out of the rain,” Pratt said.

However, he wasn't sure if they had managed to save the guest book, which contains an impressive record of visitors from practically every state in the U.S. and many parts of the world.

“Dad is disappointed. He visited the chapel twice a week to sweep and water the plants and trees,” Pratt said.

“It ministered to a lot of people. It played a dual role — in remembrance of my mother and also as a place for Christians of all denominations to go.”

The Pratt family plans to rebuild the roadside chapel, which is about 14 miles northeast of Yuma. A roadside sign encouraged passersby to “pause, rest, worship.”

“This morning Dad pretty much said it will take time but we'll rebuild,” Pratt said. “We're blessed to have friends who helped build it the first time and I'm sure many will step up again the next time.”

The church was first built in 1995. It measures 7 feet by 12 feet and had six small pews that seated about 12 people, a wooden cross on a wall and a small wooden pulpit.

Yuman Marvin Cooper has recently installed six stained-glass windows at the chapel, including a nativity scene.

The church hosted numerous weddings and funerals and annual sunrise services each Easter officiated by Cecil Pratt, pastor of the Mohawk Valley Presbyterian Church and associate pastor of First Southern Baptist Church of Wellton.

Read more: Storm destroys tiny chapel, family hopes to rebuild Storm causes outages Nominal impact for dove hunters, storm, pratt, church - News - YumaSun
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Old 09-07-2011, 01:47 PM   #2
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Here's a pic:

It's hard to know what to think about this...

Some folks would say that a lightning strike on a church would be a sure sign of Heavenly Displeasure...

I guess if they rebuild and it gets hit again, we'll know for sure.

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