BARNWELL, S.C. (WJBF) – Crews responding to the scene of a fire at Hagood Avenue Baptist Church caused by an apparent lightning strike.

The strike happened shortly before 1 p.m. Friday afternoon as storms made their way through the area.

Eyewitnesses say that crews have been working to contain the fire, and the building has taken on significant damage.

As of 3 p.m., multiple fire crews from surrounding areas have responded and continue to work to contain the blaze.

Members of the church and the community gathered to bring first responders while on scene, and the pastor says this is very shocking.

“The biggest thing we need right now is just prayer. We’re very confident that God is going to take care of his people and provide for us. We know that the building is a place we’ve been given to meet, but the church is the people,” says Pastor Brandon Sandifer.

According to authorities, no one was hurt or in the church at the time of the fire.

Pastor Sandifer says the church conference they were planning for this weekend has been canceled until further notice.

Count on NewsChannel 6 for more developments as they happen.