Time: 4:30 p.m. CEST
Several fires broke in the cathedrals, home of the Orthodox churches in the United States and Australia happened during the Orthodox Easter, as various media outlets from the area report. As the New York Times writes, a historic building for the Serbian Orthodox church in Manhattan “was gutted by flames on Sunday,” shortly after the Easter services.
The New York City Fire Department received a first call for a fire at the West25th Street between Fifth Avenue and Avenue of the American in the Flatiron district after 7:00 p.m. local time. The fire at the St.Sava Orthodox Cathedral grew to a four-alarm emergency, as the fire officials said. It took over 160 department personnel to extinguish the fire.
The church was empty when the fire started. Another fire happen in a Orthodox Cathedral in Sydney overnight. A large fire destroyed the Macedonian Orthodox Church of the Resurrection in Rockdale in Sydney’ south on Sunday.
Superintendent Adam Dewberry, from Fire and Rescue New South Wales, said about 60 firefighters battled the blaze at the church on Frederick Street for several hours, before bringing it under control. Large flames could be seen shooting from the roof of the church, which earlier on Sunday had hosted services for Orthodox Easter. Victoria’s oldest Greek Orthodox church, The Annunciation of Our Lady, was also damaged by fire on Monday, but NSW police said there was no known link between the fires, the Sydney Morning Heralds report.
As YahooNews Australia reports, “members of the Orthodox community believe a candle fell over inside the building following their Easter celebrations last night, but police are now investigating whether a massive blaze that destroyed a historic church in Sydney’s west was an arson attack targeting a stash of Easter donations.”