Nature can be terrifying.

Volcano Island

Shocking footage shows the moment a church collapses in a cloud of dark ashes on the Spanish island of La Palma.

The island, which is home to around 85,000 inhabitants, was rocked by the eruption of the Cumbre Vieja volcano this month  that's destroyed more than 500 buildings and 12 miles of roads, The Washington Post reports.

The bell tower of a small church on the island succumbed to the forces of the flowing lava over the weekend, a powerful display of the volcano's raw power.

Lava Flows

On Friday, new vents caused more blistering lava to spew forth, almost five days after the volcano started erupting.

Now, the eruption is finally starting to slow down with the volcano entering a "low activity" phase, according to the Associated Press.

The lava is now making its way down a steep slope, where it's approaching the shore. As of Monday, however, the lava flows are still about half a mile away from the ocean.

But if lava were to ever drip into the water, superheated plumes of water could pose a health threat to locals, officials from Involcan, the Canary Islands’ volcanology institute, warned in a Facebook post.

Once lava hits water, a thermal shock generates plumes of hydrocholoric acid and shards of volcanic glass, which can result in skin irritations and inflammation of the respiratory tract.

READ MORE: Video shows church bell tower collapse after being hit by lava on La Palma [The Washington Post]

More on volcanoes: Volcano Flings Lava Nearly a Mile High, Swallows Houses Whole

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