MOUNT HOLLY, N.C. -- A pastor who was seriously hurt in a fire in Gaston County Tuesday morning has died, according to a Facebook post.

  • The pastor was taken to a hospital with life-threatening injuries
  • His wife and family dog are expected to be OK
  • The home that caught fire is next door to Free Will Baptist Church where Burch is the pastor

The North Carolina Association of Free Will Baptists posted to Facebook that "Pastor Clayton Burch is now absent from the body, and present with the Lord."

The fire started at around 3 a.m. on West Catawba Avenue in Mount Holly. The home is next to Goshen Free Will Baptist Church, where Burch is the pastor. The fire marshal says that Burch and his wife, Barbara, got out on their own.

She and the family dog are OK, according to officials. Burch was taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. 

The walls of the home and the couple's cars remain standing, but charred. Fire marshals say smoke detectors were working in the home, even still going off when firefighters arrived.

A memorial service will be held Saturday and a funeral service is planned for Tuesday evening with a burial service to be held Wednesday.

The fire marshal says they’ll continue to work the scene starting from the outside and working their way in. A cause has not yet been released.