Church Collapses in Northeast D.C.

Weight of snow and tree made roof collapse

A church has collapsed in northeast Washington because of the heavy snow and a tree that fell on its roof.

D.C. Fire & EMS representative Pete Piringer said when the tree fell on the roof of the one-and-a-half story building, the weight of the tree and the snow made it collapse.

Joshua's Temple First Born Church, located at 4318 Sheriff Road NE, was a very small, quaint church with a dedicated following, according to NBC4's Tracee Wilkins, who is familiar with the neighborhood and often saw parishioners lining the street with their cars.

The pastor of the church told Wilkins that he's very thankful that this incident did not happen on Sunday and that no one was hurt. A little more than a 100 people worship at Joshua's Temple every Sunday, said the pastor.

Church officials were planning their usual Sunday mass, which they did after the last two storms, and were expecting the usual number of parishioners to attend.

Piringer said no one was inside at the time of the incident, but officials are doing a secondary search with dogs as a precaution. Fire officials have also turned off all utilities and evacuated several neighboring buildings for safety reasons.

Piringer said the area around the church will be blocked off as well.

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