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Churches Impacted by Propane Shortage Problem

Created: 02/02/2014 11:07 PM KAALtv.com
By: Sean Boswell

(ABC 6 News) -- Sunday Mass went on as scheduled at East Freeborn Lutheran Church.

Members were able to unbundle themselves inside, but at a higher cost to the church than usual.

"A lot of us have not been prepared for this happening," said Pastor Matthew Griggs.

Griggs says the church is making it through the winter just fine even with the skyrocketing propane costs.

"We always have to live by faith, we always have to make sure that we have enough money available to do the work that we're called to do, to help people in need and to proclaim the gospel," said Griggs.

The church has already spent about the same amount on propane as they did all of last winter.

Central Freeborn Lutheran Church is heated primarily by a geothermal unit. Church Council President Cathy Legreid says paying less for heating than churches using propane has helped in the churches mission.

"If we didn't have geothermal, it would affect our bottom line, because churches mission is to give money to the less fortunate and organizations in the community and worldwide and that probably would hurt it," said Legreid.

Church member Wayne Indreile has concerns about a trickledown effect when it comes to donating money to the churches.

"If they have to have propane, I’m sure there's churches and recreational activities for their children or themselves that sacrifice," said Indreile.

"We always are nervous because it can change with a heartbeat, prices and the situation," said Griggs.

Area churches are also affected by the propane shortage problem.