LAKEWOOD — A fire on the grounds of an Ocean County church has closed a road as firefighters battle the wind to put out the flames.

Ocean County Sheriff Mike Mastronardy said the fire was called in around 10:20 a.m. for a fire in a small building in front of the church across from the Ocean County Park.

Route 88 was closed between Lanes Mills Road and New Hampshire Avenue in both directions to allow for fighting the fire which sent clouds of white smoke into the air.

The Lakewood Scoop reported there were no injuries.

According to the church website, St. Anthony's Claret was built in the 1950s to serve a growing Hispanic population and offers services in both Spanish and English. It is part of the Society of the Divine Word, one of the largest Roman Catholic orders for men in the country.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at

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