Lincoln church damaged after frozen sprinkler burst on Christmas Eve

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — Cold temperatures caused a sprinkler to burst at Lincon’s New Covenant Community Church, just hours before the Christmas Eve service. 

“I happen to walk into our auditorium, which is a big open area, and it felt like I just walked into the rain forest at the Henry Doorly Zoo,” the Rev. Troy Heller said. 

Church members say the burst pipe flooded the auditorium and some classrooms. 

“We got the water shut off, but not before a significant chunk amount of damage was done,” the Rev. Brent Watson said.  

The Christmas Eve service wasn’t canceled; it was just moved into a smaller auditorium.

Frozen pipes and sprinklers were a problem for many places in Lincoln as cold temperatures swept across the state last week.

“The restoration company that came that evening, which is amazing, said that we were the fifth church in town that had called him that day,” Watson said. 

Insurance will cover most of the damage, but Watson and Heller said they are grateful for the help they received from the community. 

“I think one of the greatest things that I see God do is when he brings people together to help, and it was so awesome to see how people quickly showed up to help out,” Heller said. 

Watson said that on Christmas Eve, the church usually does a fundraiser to help local organizations.

“This year, the organization is called Fresh Start, which helps women who are stuck in homelessness for various reasons trying to get back on their feet,” he said. 

Watson says if anyone wants to help the church, he prefers that they donate to Fresh Start.

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