ST. LOUIS – A historic church in Soulard burned overnight. Bethlehem Mission Church on the Gravois and Allen Avenues is damaged, but the fire chief says structurally it’s okay. However, the inside is burned.

The fire started around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday. People who live on the block were shocked to see all the smoke billowing out of the historic building. As soon as the first crews arrived, the chief said they went in, which allowed more air to get inside, and then the fire really took off – leading to more crews arriving to help.

In total, it took about 60 firefighters to get the fire under control. They were working with three ladder trucks and one deck gun. The building is three stories, and there was a lot of wood inside.

Chief Dennis Jenkerson shared that the fire was heaviest on the first and second floors. There’s a home attached to the church. It was once used to house clergy.

“The church has to be reused,” Jenkerson said. “It’s like an arts center right now. so, they were in there doing some work earlier, and we think they might have had an issue with some chemicals.”

The fire chief said he’s spoken with the owner of the building, and as investigators work to determine an exact cause of this fire. They don’t think it’s suspicious. No injuries have been reported.

FOX 2 will update this story with more information as it becomes available.