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Vacant Buffalo church destroyed by fire

A vacant East Side church will have to be torn down after fire ripped through it on Sunday.

The former home of Trinity Baptist Church at 41 Spruce St. suffered an estimated $50,000 damage from the blaze.

Dispatchers received a report of flames shortly before noon and when firefighters arrived within minutes they were confronted by thick black smoke and flames coming from the rear of the church building, which had collapsed.

The red-brick building was the home of Trinity Baptist Church for 84 years, until the congregation moved to a new worship space on Bailey Avenue in 2002.

The Spruce Street site has not been in use since then.

Preservationists had been trying to save it from the wrecking ball. The building dates back to 1869, when it was home to the First German Baptist Church.

Firefighters called for an emergency demolition, citing unsafe conditions because of the fire.