Church completely rebuilds after Gatlinburg Wildfires

Roaring Fork Baptist Church’s congregation was able to rebuild church in two years.
Published: Nov. 28, 2021 at 5:15 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 28, 2021 at 9:29 PM CST
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Five years after wildfires spread across Gatlinburg, Roaring Fork Baptist Church has rebuilt its facility and is holding church services.

“Around 7 p.m. [in 2016], the wildfires raged through Gatlinburg and they took the church,” Senior pastor at Roaring Fork Baptist Church, Dr. Kim McCrosky said. “We survived the fires.”

On Sunday, the congregation celebrated after rebuilding quicker than expected.

“Everybody who saw the building before was very sad that we lost the old building,” Roaring Fork youth pastor Casey Miles said. “There’s no way that we would’ve ever thought that we’d be where we are today.”

Miles has been a youth pastor at Roaring Fork for just over five years. He was at the church for about a month when the church burned down. It was expected to take four to five years to rebuild the church, but it only took two years with the help of the group Building for Christ out of Alabama.

“It blows our imagination to be blessed by God with the things we have,” Miles said.

The congregation was working to ensure flames never claim the building again. One precaution is firescaping. This includes using stone flower beds and keeping leaves out of the parking lot as best as possible.

Most of the congregation stayed together for the past five years. They even got together to pray for each other and the church just 12 hours after the fire burned the building down.

“Here we are worship God, praising God and I am just so grateful for what God has done for us,” Dr. McCrosky said.

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