Franklin County

Conway church to rebuild after tornado damage

CONWAY, Mass. (WWLP) - The United Congregational Church sustained catastrophic damage from the tornado that hit Conway in February of last year. 

The tornado ripped off pieces of the roof and dismantled the foundation. The 30-member congregation has been worshipping at the Conway Grammar School library since the church closed. 

"They keep fighting, and they keep dreaming," said Rev. Candi Ashenden, Pastor of the United Congregational Church. "Although we will grieve one last time when this building comes down, I think we will be ready to dig in and begin to dream with some excitement."

Pastor Candi Ashenden said they reached a $1.5 million settlement with their insurance company to build a smaller church. She said they plan to salvage some of the churches' windows and doors. 

The United Congregational Church was built in the 1800s and has served as both a place of worship and a community center.

"We are going to make every effort in reconstructing, we can still accommodate those needs and wants," said William Leno, member of the United Congregational Church Building Committee. "We are a community church."

Pastor Ashenden expects the church to be taken down in late July, which would be exactly 250 years since the congregation's founding.


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