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Flooded creek damages Apalachin church

APALACHIN (WBNG) – Local church officials are cleaning up after a nearby creek flooded caused damage to the building.

"It was disbelief and after about an hour we just both went numb," said Jill Darling, wife of senior pastor Pete Darling.

Late Tuesday night, neighbors watched as Faith Christian Fellowship Church was surrounded by a massive flood.

"We were stopped right there on Barton Road and they said ‘you can’t go back out there’ and I said ‘What’s going on?’ and they said ‘ that church up there is flooded’ and I said’ That’s my church’," said Pete Darling.

A nearby creek overflowed due to the excessive rain, the third time the church has been flooded.

The water was so strong, it broke down one of the doors.

"I was hoping the doors didn’t get busted or anything but the one door did," said Pete Darling.

Church leaders say the water caused between $30,000 and $45,000 dollars in damages.

"We got to get the mud out. We got to replace carpets, going to have to clean everything. Going to have to treat mold, probably two or three times," said Pete Darling.

For leaders of Faith Christian Fellowship Church, it was a familiar tragedy.

"We have already been through this before in 2011, so it was a tremendous amount of work to get back on our feet so to have to do this all over again just seven years later was devastating," said Jill Darling.

But just like 2011, the church is rebuilding thanks to volunteers from the community.

"Some people have just stopped by to help. We have neighbors who have stopped by to help," said Pete Darling.

With cleanup efforts already started, the church hopes they can be up and running again soon.

"You just have to deal with what you dealt with and make the best of it and keep going forward and never give up," said Jill Darling.

Church leaders say it could take a couple of months to get the church fixed again and ready for it’s congregation.

They are asking for help in their clean up efforts so they can continue to serve the community.

If you would like to help, you can contact the church here.

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