Olson fire

The remains of Rev. Matt Olson's home.

A pastor’s family’s home was seriously damaged by fire just after midnight Monday.

Rev. Matt Olson of First Baptist Church in Sharon, along with his wife and two daughters, had just left to head out of town when he returned to retrieve his glasses. When he opened the door, smoke came billowing out and the family cat dashed outside.

“We’re still sifting through the damage, but we are blessed,” Olson said hours after the fire. “We’ve had to let go of a lot of possessions, but we have been held together by Christ through our church and community.”

Sharon and Shady Grove volunteers responded to the 911 call at 4831 Sharon Road and reported that a bedroom of the home was on fire and began attacking the flames. Much of the rest of the home had smoke damage but no structural damage, thanks to the quick work of the firefighters.

The brick home was the church parsonage of First Baptist of Sharon. It sustained major damage in the bedroom areas, but no injuries were reported. 

Family members lost most of their possessions, including all of Brother Olson’s suits, according to a Facebook post by Rena Register of the Jones County Baptist Association.

The family left Tuesday to spend Thanksgiving with relatives in Florida. she wrote, and “upon their return, temporary housing will need to be secured and they will begin to replace what was lost.”

The family of four’s most urgent need, she continued, will be temporary housing until the parsonage can be repaired. 

Funds to assist the family with the replacement of clothing and other needs can be sent to: 

Jones County Baptist Association, 206 S 11th Ave., Laurel, MS 39440

— PIO Dana Bumgardner/

Jones County Fire Council 


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