CHERRY GROVE – Following the fire that tore through the Cherry Grove Community's Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints last night, Stephen Wille, bishop of the church, remains hopeful for the future.
The congregation will be using the Cherry Grove Community Hall this Sunday for its weekly service, according to Wille. When asked if there are specific plans in place as to the relocation of the Cherry Grove congregation in the foreseeable future, Wille said, “it’s much too early to tell.”
“Honestly, I’m just trying to get my head around this,” he said, before expressing his gratitude to the community, following the fire. “The loving support that we have felt from the community has been awe inspiring. That is the greatest gift they could give us at this time.”
“We’ve lost our home... and it’s not only the home of our church community, but also of our Cherry Grove community,” said Wille, explaining the church was central to the community for many years.
Church members and non-members alike have visited the church through weddings, funerals, as well as other celebrations, he explained. “So, we’re grateful for the outpouring love we’ve received from the community.”
Often in people’s lives, there are trials and tribulations, both “personally and the community,” he added. And, as “disciples of Jesus Christ... we have faith in Him.”
“As we trust in Him, we'll be able to overcome these trials and these difficulties in our lives,” said Wille.
“We’re faithful, we’re hopeful, and we know the future is bright.”
Firefighters from Cold Lake, Bonnyville, La Corey, and Iron River were called to Cherry Grove in the early morning hours of April 28. The fire destroyed the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, while a second fire was put out by emergency crews at the Cherry Grove Post Office.