Visiting Youth Staying in Rochester Home that Caught Fire

Posted at: 10/18/2013 7:36 PM
By: Jenna Lohse

(ABC 6 News) -- We've learned new details about a Northwest Rochester house fire that displaced twenty people. Those staying at the home say they're holding on to what matters most.

"We know God is good, we know we're taken care of in spite of all this stuff,” said Matt Ragain, Youth Pastor from Forest Lake.

What started as a night full of worship at the Minnesota Youth Convention at the Mayo Civic Center.

"My wife left early and she went to the home we were staying at,” said Ragain.

For Matt Ragain and the nineteen people he brought down to Rochester, Thursday night took a turn for the worst.

"I mean smoke was billowing out, she gives me a call, the whole lower basement of the home we were staying in was on fire,” said Ragain.

The home of Matt’s parent-in-laws, who are out of the country at the moment, caught fire from what Rochester Fire Officials say appears to be a fireplace in the basement.

"We are just internally grateful that no one was hurt by the grace of God no one got injured or anything. It's just tremendously sad how beat up their house became,” said Ragain.

Matt says a call overseas to his in-laws wasn't easy, knowing they were gracious enough to open their home to a group of teenagers and church leaders.

"I told him your house in on fire and he's basically saying Matt it's just a house," said Ragain.

Despite the fire, the group is looking past the possessions they lost and doing what they came here to do, growing their faith and holding on to what matters most.

"It was a horrible mess, we we're incredibly saddened by it but in the big picture the grand scheme of things it's a house but we're here for bigger purposes,” said Ragain.

The group relocated to a hotel for the time being and are heading back to Forest Lake tonight. As for the homeowners, Matt tells us they are headed home as soon as they can.