DOWNINGTOWN, Pa. (CBS) — Calvary Fellowship Church in Downingtown has about 1500 members. Like many places, their activities this weekend were cancelled because of the weather, which was a good idea because that was before they knew what happened.
“I looked up and there I could see sky,” Pastor Lee Wiggins said Saturday. “That’s when I realized, oh my!”
The pastor says he was called to battle through the snow to check on a sprinkler alarm that was going off at the church.
“Over here at the edge of the balcony, it sounded like a waterfall,” Pastor Lee said. “I mean it was just a gushing waterfall.”
Mounds of snow had drifted and compiled onto one section of the church’s roof, proving to be too much for it to hold.
“I’ve seen a lot of bad things in my day and this was pretty bad,” one man said. “This was one of the worst things I’d seen.”
Broken pipes caused by the collapse left crews to deal with the massive water damage on top of all else.
Weeks ago, Pastor Lee had planned his Sunday service to focus on the rapture. He ended up having to live stream it from home.
“The rapture, a lot of people talk about that, when Jesus comes back to take us out of here,” Pastor Lee said.
He says once one church member saw the photos of the roof online, she joked and said ‘it looked like that’s what happened’. It’s the kind of humor and positivity that the pastor says will get them through this.
“There’s something that happens when we just have to slow down and our normal routine is broken up,” Pastor Lee said. “We can just say, ‘wait a minute maybe there’s something going on around me’.
A prayer board on the inside of the church reads, ‘grace and peace in the midst of a storm’, and while it’s not clear when this was written, it’s a prayer that seems to have been answered.
“How we respond and interact with each other, and how we interact with God is way more important that a hole in the roof,” Pastor Lee said.
Crews are still working to remove the rest of the snow from the roof. They are then going to try to secure it structurally, before shrink rapping it, to make sure that it is water proof, because rain is in the forecast.