SPENCER, Mass. (WWLP) – Nearly 100 firefighters from close to 20 departments were called to a fire at the First Congregational Church in Spencer on Friday.

No injuries were reported after a fire destroyed the church located on Route 9 in Spencer. Residents were asked to avoid the area Friday afternoon after the church steeple caught fire. Multiple alarms were called for several fire crews to assist in the area.

The Spencer Police Department says the fire that burned down the 160-year-old building was likely started by a lightning strike. When Friday’s storm moved through the area, lightning struck the steeple causing the church to light on fire and burn to the ground. Spencer Fire Chief Robert Parsons says the building that has been around since the 1700s is a total loss.

“We feel for the Church Community for the loss of their place of worship. I cant say enough of the enormous assistance by Southbridge Fire Chief Paul Normandin in being the IC with me being out of town. Thank you to all the Chiefs that coordinated the effort!,” Spencer Fire & Emergency Services shared on Facebook.