Maywood church fire: Large flames engulf beloved community facility, causing roof to cave in

Fire broke out at New Life in Christ Bible Church in Maywood

Cate Cauguiran Image
Tuesday, December 27, 2022
Maywood church's roof caves in from massive fire
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Maywood fire crews battled a blaze at New Life in Christ Bible Church on South 15th Avenue Monday afternoon.

MAYWOOD, Ill. (WLS) -- Firefighters in west suburban Maywood battled a large blaze at a church Monday afternoon.

Fire crews were on the scene at the New Life in Christ Bible Church about 3 p.m. in the 1600-block of South 15th Avenue as large flames engulfed the structure.

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It was not immediately clear how the fire began, but the Maywood fire chief said no one was injured.

By about 5 p.m., heavy smoke spewed from the building, and the roof appeared to have caved in.

The fire chief said the fire is believed to have started at the back of the church.

Initially, the chief said firefighters were able to get a handle on the flames, but, at one point, things took a turn and the fire started to spread, and fast.

Firefighters went into defensive mode, attacking the fire from the outside, both on the ground and on ladders. Two nearby homes were evacuated, but crews were able to keep it from spreading.

The fire was struck out by about 6 p.m.

Senior Pastor Ronald Beamon said he is devastated by the loss of his church, but also said this disaster will not stop him.

"When I pulled up my whole body just started shaking," he said. "This place means everything to me it's like a second home."

Pastor Beamon said he was here all last week, getting excited about the holiday décor.

"We were just excited about having three Christmas trees this year in the sanctuary," he said.

Neighbors said the facility is a beloved community church that typically has cars lined up around the block during services.

Pastor Beamon said the church had just installed a new roof last year.

"We were so proud to see a brand new roof put on the church and to see it today just totally destroyed," he said, choking up.

But his faith is stronger than ever.

"It's going to take a lot to rebuild, but I know that God is with us," Beamon said.

The church said it will be posting news on fundraising efforts on its Facebook page.