Church Severely Damaged in Blaze

Firefighters responded to First Church in Malden, Massachusetts early Thursday morning

Fire officials are investigating the cause of a fire that caused major damage to the First Church in Malden.

Flames and smoke were pouring out of the building when firefighters arrived shortly after 3 a.m. Thursday. No injuries were reported.

Deputy Fire Chief Philip Cargill told The Boston Globe that the fire caused an estimated $75,000 to $100,000 damage and it appears the entire front of the building will have to be replaced.

Cargill says investigators are looking at faulty wiring as a potential cause, as well as the possibility that a homeless person started it by accident.

City records show the United Church of Christ building was built in 1950. Church officials say the building is the eighth church in the congregation's history, which dates back to 1649.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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