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GoFundMe Raises Thousands for Vandalized Church

Thousands of people have contributed close to $213,000 to a GoFundMe campaign that seeks to help repair the Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Greenville, Mississippi.

The church, which has a predominantly Black congregation, was set on fire and vandalized with the words, “Vote Trump” on Tuesday evening, officials say.

Photos of the damage showed that while the church’s brick walls still stand, the main sanctuary and pews inside were charred black, ABC News reports.

The church’s pastor, Carolyn Hudson, said that churchgoers’ “hearts are broken,” but they were hopeful that “God would allow us to build another sanctuary in that same place.”

Today, it appears the congregation’s prayers have been answered.

The GoFundMe campaign started Wednesday, and had an original goal of just $10,000.

“I’ve truly been blown away,” campaign organizer Blair Reeves said. “Donations are coming in from all over the country.”

Reeves, who is from New York, is not affiliated with the church at all. But he felt “compelled” to create the campaign because he felt the church deserved the same type of monetary support that a North Carolina Republican Party field office got after it was recently firebombed.

“The animus of this election cycle combined with the potent racial history of burning Black churches as a political symbol makes this event something we must not ignore,” he wrote in the campaign’s description. “Only two weeks ago, the internet came together to help repair a North Carolina GOP field office that had been burned by thugs. Justice demands we do the same now.”