Orange County

Bell tower of damaged Parramore church to be removed

ORLANDO, Fla. — Black Bottom House of Prayer, a nearly 100-year-old church in Parramore, was already dealing with major damage because its roof collapsed when Hurricane Ian blew through and destroyed its bell tower.

The city wants it demolished because of safety concerns.


“This church, we’ve suffered many losses, but we’ve kept the faith,” Pastor Dana Jackson said.

It was going to be demolished in 2019 until Jackson walked by with her grandchildren and decided to buy the church as her grieving project using money from her son’s death.

Read: ‘God is going to do it’: Pastor prays for help to resurrect 94-year-old Parramore church

Jackson was raising money to restore the church. Then the roof collapsed the morning after Orlando’s Historic Preservation Board approved its historic landmark application.

The church received a $500,000 African American culture grant to clean up and stabilize the structure, get a new roof and remove the bell tower.

Read: Florida awards $2 million to help the historic restoration of Orlando’s Parramore neighborhood

Hurricane Ian knocked down the front of the church and damaged the bell tower beyond repair. Now the city wants it down immediately.

The bell tower is set to be removed on Friday. Jackson said in about two years the church could be completely restored.

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Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson,

Sarah Wilson joined WFTV Channel 9 in 2018 as a digital producer after working as an award-winning newspaper reporter for nearly a decade in various communities across Central Florida.

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