Chester County

Snow Causes Roof of Chester County Church to Collapse

Pastor: "I looked up and we could see out to the sky"

Snow from Saturday’s blizzard caused the roof of a Chester County, Pennsylvania, church to collapse.

Officials with Calvary Fellowship Downingtown on W. Devon Drive in Downingtown say the collapse was caused by snow on the roof of the church’s auditorium. Lee Wiggins, the senior pastor of Calvary Fellowship, told NBC10 more than five feet of snow fell through the roof, setting off the sprinkler system which flooded the auditorium.

"It was like Niagara Falls," Pastor Wiggins said.

No one was hurt in the collapse. Pastor Wiggins told NBC10 he estimates the hole in the roof is more than 60 feet in diameter.

"I looked up and we could see out to the sky a third of the roof to half of the roof is gone," he said.

Pastor Wiggins and his daughter, Noelle Wiggins, made the discovery after walking into the church auditorium shortly after 6 p.m. Saturday.

"I almost cried," Noelle Wiggins said. "I couldn't handle it."

John Stout of Belfor Property Restoration visited the church Saturday night to examine the damage.

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"It's the worst I've seen," Stout said. "We've dealt with worse across the country but this is the worst I've seen in Chester County." 

Experts say repairs to the church will take at least six months and cost more than $1 million. Pastor Wiggins told NBC10 his church will stream their service online Sunday.

CLICK HERE if you would like to donate money to the church for repairs.

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