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A group of 40 preschool children huddled in their classroom singing “Jesus Loves Me” as a tornado rampaged through their city, and ripped the roof of of their school.
The only room at Mt. Zion Baptist Church and Day Care that was untouched by the tornado was the one where 40 preschool students and 10 church staff members had gathered.
The tornado severely damaged several buildings, including the church. The torando tore through five miles of land in Paducah, Kentucky and was a category 2, which can have speeds of up to 135 mph.
“God was definitely with us,” preschool director Michelle Rushing told news station WPSD. “The secretary and I walked through the doors just as we heard our glass breaking and felt the suction sucking the roof off.”
Rushing could hear the tornado destroying the church’s building, so she led the children in songs like “Jesus Loves Me” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands,” according to the West Kentucky Star.
McCracken County Sheriff Matt Carter credited God for the preschoolers’ survival.
“The almighty hand of God has provided safety to our community,” Carter told the West Kentucky Star. “The destruction path is approximately five miles long. There are approximately three homes that are devastated but no injuries, and also there is approximately a half dozen other homes that have sustained minor to moderate damage. This could have been an extremely high fatality rate and we’re very fortunate and blessed to only report one minor injury.”
The senior pastor of Mt. Zion is thankful the children are safe, and knows his congregation will recover.
“Church is not a building, church is the people,” he told Nashville’s Fox 17. “Buildings can be rebuilt, and frankly God is going to get us through this. God is going to give us great vision for the future. We as a church family – we are going to rally together.”
Church member Sylvia Cherry said, “We just give God the glory that no one was hurt.”