Darling Church near Little Falls destroyed in fire, arson suspected

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Authorities believe someone set the Darling Lutheran Church near Little Falls, Minnesota on fire around 3:30 a.m. on Friday morning. Photo courtesy of Randall Fire Department. 

The Morrison County sheriff says a fire that destroyed the historic former Darling Church just north of Little Falls appears to have been set intentionally and is being investigated as arson.

The sheriff’s office received a call at 3:17 a.m. Friday that the Darling Church on Highway 10 was on fire. When deputies arrived, the building was engulfed in flames. The Randall Fire Department responded and was able to keep the fire from spreading into the wood line, but the church was a total loss.

The church was founded in 1893 as Darling Immanuel Lutheran Church and closed in 1967.

The Minnesota State Fire Marshal's office is assisting the Morrison County Sheriff's Office with this investigation. The Minnesota Arson Reward Project is offering up to a $5,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.

If you have any information, contact the hotline at 1-800-723-2020, or the Morrison County Sheriff's Office at 320-632-9233.