Elizabeth community determined to rebuild historic church razed by fire

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The Elizabeth community is coming together to help the Shiloh Baptist Church after a fire early Sunday morning destroyed the historic building.

The 141-year old church that hosted soup kitchens twice a month, helped the homeless and welcomed all with open arms is now a complete loss, with only some walls and the foundation left standing.

"That's our whole reason for being here is to serve the community," says Pastor William Ingram, who has led the congregation for nearly 25 years.

Ingram points out it's the people who make up the church, not the building. Many of his members have been there for generations.

"We want to keep providing the services and I've been just humbled and amazed. Every pastor in town has called me," Ingram says.

MORE: Officials: 4-alarm fire destroys Elizabeth church that opened in 1879

His son, Robert Ingram, has started a GoFundMe page to help bring back Shiloh Baptist.

Donations are already coming in, as is support and prayers from the religious community across Elizabeth and Union County.

"I think that every body will come together and build back up better than before," Robert Ingram says.

"We are not going to let this church down,” says Salaam Ismial, Director of National United Youth Counsel. “And so I'm calling for all of our churches, our mosques, our temples, Muslims, Christians, Jews to come together and to wrap around this church, not only in prayers, but also in giving."

MORE: Shiloh Baptist Church GoFundMe page


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