NEW ORLEANS (WGNO)— A three alarm fire at an Uptown Baptist church has stunned the congregation, and they are worried about the church’s future.

Firefighters got the call at 9:19 this morning that smoke was coming out of the Austerlitz Street Baptist Church. By 9:42 it turned into a three alarm fire and then by 10:20 the NOFD had the blaze under control.

“I started to smell smoke and then there were four or five fire engines in front of my house,” Sheryl Howard, Neighbor on Austerlitz Street said.

She lives right across from the church where the three alarm fire broke out this morning.

“I saw a lot of smoke,” she said.

New Orleans Firefighters say two people called 911 after they saw a ball of fire coming from a pipe when they turned the lights on.

“It was in the wall. Mainly in the wall and then it reached up into the top attic,” Gregory Davis with NOFD said.

The fire mostly spread inside the wall of the brick church.

“Just burned from the rear of the church and a lot of water damage inside. The church is salvageable. The guys were here very quickly and they did a good job of extinguishing the fire,” Davis said.

While fortunately the church isn’t a total loss, it is still a sad day because the church just got its new roof a few weeks ago after being heavily damaged in Hurricane Ida.

“Oh my gosh, so heartbreaking,” Howard said.

And what Sheryl Howard is now worried about most is the church’s artifacts.

“We are just hoping we still have some of the history from hundred plus years. I was baptized in the church. Went to Sunday school here, sang in the choir, and just so many wonderful memories. It is my home church. I love this church,” she said.

It took lots of manpower to control the blaze. 22 NOFD units carrying 56 firefighters, plus EMS, Entergy, and NOPD were all on the scene. There were no injuries. The fire is still under investigation.