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MIAMI GARDENS (CBSMiami) – A house of worship swept by fire on Tuesday remains closed to those it serves.

The fire broke out around 2:30 p.m. at the Greater New Bethel Baptist Church.

Church staff and children were inside the attached child care center. Mark Neptune raced to the church concerned about his two and half-year-old.

“Walking up, seeing the flame, my heart was racing a little bit,” said parent Mark Neptune. “But I know they have a good system and they put everyone in the back room away from everything. So everyone is safe.”

Everyone who was inside the church made it out safely. It took nearly 50 firefighters several hours to put out the flames.

“It started on the roof. My understanding is there was some roof repair is going on, somehow a fire was ignited on the roof and it was trapped between several layers of the roof and that’s what made it very difficult for firefighters to stop the fire,” said Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Lt. Kirsten Miller.

Firefighters were forced to cut holes in the roof in order to get to the flames.

Investigators are looking into Aegis Roofing who was working on the church when the fire started.

CBS4 caught up with Aegis Roofer workers at the church.  Fabian Watson told us they were doing general maintenance at the time.

“Firefighters were called. We were working. Firefighters were called. That’s it. We don’t know what’s going on.” Watson said.

The investigation into the cause of the fire remains open.


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