Fire strikes Taylorsville church during thunderstorm

Flames engulf a Taylorsville church Saturday.
Flames engulf a Taylorsville church Saturday. Brandon Echerd via WBTV

A massive fire spread through a church in Taylorsville Saturday afternoon as a thunderstorm was passing through the area.

According to fire officials, the fire at Bethlehem Baptist Church on N.C. 127 destroyed the church’s sanctuary. Flames could be seen shooting out of the side of the church and engulfing the church's steeple. No injuries were reported from the scene.

In viewer photos it appears that the roof collapsed.

Units from every department in Alexander County and fire crews from Hickory responded to the fire. One fire official said more than 150 firefighters were on the scene because of the heat.

As of 5 p.m. Saturday, the biggest flames had reportedly been put out, but crews said they anticipate the building to be smoldering into the night and maybe even on Sunday.

Officials have not said what started the fire. When asked if the fire was started by lightning, one fire official said, “Iit is definitely something we are looking at.”

WBTV is a news partner of the Observer