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Tropical Storm Irene Damages Historic Woburn Church

By Bill Shields, WBZ-TV
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The First Congretional Church in Worcester sustained heavy damage from Tropical Storm Irene.

The First Congretional Church in Worcester sustained heavy damage from Tropical Storm Irene.

WBZ-TV's Bill Shields Bill Shields
Bill Shields is a general assignment reporter for WBZ-TV News. He...
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WOBURN (CBS) – In 1642, settlers in Woburn formed the First Congregational Church and the congregation has been in existence since.

In 1860, members built a spectacular new building, who’s steeple towered over the region and still does.

But Tropical Storm Irene inflicted some damage to the famed steeple. “Structurally, it’s still sound,” said Pastor Glen Clementi. “But the facade has been damaged. Thankfully, the clock still works.”

WBZ-TV’s Bill Shields reports

Church members have organized a fair this Saturday, that will hopefully raise some money to fix the steeple, but the entire building is in need of a makeover.

“We need people,” says Pastor Clementi. “Years ago, there were a thousand people in the congregation. Today, we have several dozen. So the steeple needs work, but so does the entire building.”

Inside the massive structure, it is a gorgeous display of workmanship complete with a rare Hook organ.

“Yea, it sounds beautiful, and we have an organist who plays it every Sunday,” says Clementi.

Now, if they can just get a good turnout at the fair Sunday.

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