Pastor: Site of Massacre Can't Be a Church Anymore

Frank Pomery suggests building in Sutherland Springs be demolished
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 10, 2017 7:39 AM CST
Pastor Wants to Demolish Church Attacked by Gunman
First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas.   (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

The Texas church where more than two dozen people were killed by a gunman during Sunday services will be demolished, the pastor said. Pastor Frank Pomeroy told leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention that it would be too painful to continue using First Baptist Church as a place of worship, per the AP. Pomeroy discussed the state of the building with the denomination's top executives, who traveled to the rural community in a show of support, a national Southern Baptist spokesman said. The pastor described the church as "too stark of a reminder" of the massacre, spokesman Sing Oldham said.

No final decisions can be made without consulting congregants, but Pomeroy discussed turning the site into a memorial for the dead and putting up a new building on property the church owns, Oldham said. Charlene Uhl, mother of 16-year-old Haley Krueger, who died in the attack, agreed that the church should come down. There should still be a church "but not here," she said Thursday as she visited a row of white crosses commemorating the victims in front of the building. She said her daughter attended worship services and a weekly Thursday night youth group meeting held by another victim, Karla Holcombe.

(More Texas mass shooting stories.)

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