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Fire at Yellowknife's St. Patrick's Church deemed suspicious

A suspicious fire caused damage to the exterior of St. Patrick's Catholic Church early Saturday morning in Yellowknife.

Part of the building was visibly charred as a result of early Saturday fire

A suspicious fire caused damage early Saturday morning to the side of St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Yellowknife. (Loren McGinnis/CBC)

A suspicious fire damaged the outside of St. Patrick's Catholic Church early Saturday morning in Yellowknife.

The fire was reported to the City of Yellowknife's Fire Division at around 4:21 a.m. Firefighters extinguished the fire about 45 minutes after their arrival.

"The cause of the fire is determined suspicious at this time," according to a release issued by the City of Yellowknife early Saturday afternoon. "The scene has been turned over to the RCMP for further investigation."

The side entrance to the St. Patrick's Flea Market was visibly charred as a result of the fire. 

RCMP blocked off access to the market and the church with tape. 

Saturday evening and Sunday morning services are each pushed back by 15 minutes and will take place at St. Patrick High School. (Loren McGinnis/CBC )

Father Bernie Black, the church's pastor, said smoke seeped into the inside of the market but did not appear to have reached the inside of the church itself, though a full assessment has yet to be completed.

"It's hard to put any words to it," said Black of the incident. 

Tonight's 5 p.m. service will take place at St. Patrick High School and has been rescheduled to 5:15 p.m.

Sunday services at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. have been similarly pushed back to 9:15 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. and will also take place at the school.

Yellowknife firefighters extinguished the blaze in about 45 minutes. (Curtis Mandeville/CBC)

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