Fire escalates to 3 alarms at Northeast Baltimore church

No one injured in blaze at All Saints Evangelical Lutheran Church; cause under investigation

September 18, 2014|By Colin Campbell | The Baltimore Sun

A fire at All Saints Evangelical Lutheran Church in Northeast Baltimore escalated to three alarms before city firefighters were able to bring it under control Thursday, officials said.

The fire, which had no immediately known cause, was contained to the church in the 4200 block of Loch Raven Blvd., in the city's New Northwood neighborhood. The department called for a three-alarm response to keep the flames from spreading to adjoining buildings, spokesman Ian Brennan said. Smoke billowed high into the sky before firefighters knocked down the fire at about 3:48 p.m., a little less than an hour after the initial alarm sounded.

No estimate for the damage was available, but most of it was due to the smoke, not the flames, Brennan said. No one was inside when the fire started and no injuries were reported, according to a church official.

The Rev. Bill Gohl, dean of the Baltimore City Lutheran Churches, said All Saints has a congregation of roughly 250 people. The building also hosts a summer camp, Head Start and a day care.

"It's not devastating, because no one got hurt," he said.

Gohl said the church will hold its normally scheduled weekend services, even if it must do so outside or in another venue.

The roughly octogenarian building was insured, he said, adding, "We will put Humpty-Dumpty back together again."

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