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Photo: Survivor

by
21 March 2014

reuters

Survivor: rescue workers combing the rubble of a New York church destroyed in a gas explosion (above) have found a decades-old Bible, somehow undamaged.

The Spanish Christian Church, in East Harlem, collapsed after a gas leak in its building ignited on Wednesday of last week. Eight people were killed, including five members of the church's congregation.

It has been reported that the Bible was the original one used when the independent Evangelical church was established, about 80 years ago.

The pastor of the church, the Revd Thomas Perez, was so overcome when the Bible was pulled out of the rubble, he suffered heart palpitations and was taken to hospital. The church's financial secretary, Carmen Vargas-Rosa, said: "I thank God. It was wonderful. I really didn't think that anything that was paper would survive."

Investigators continue to search the scene to determine the exact cause of the blast.

On Saturday, they announced that air samples taken shortly after the explosion contained dangerous levels of methane gas. Investigations are continuing.

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