Damage to Church property reported after earthquake
Tuesday, August 23, 2011 1:24 PM
Damage is being reported at churches and schools in the Archdiocese of Washington, following the 5.9 magnitude earthquake that rocked the Mid-Atlantic area Aug. 23.
At Holy Name in Northeast Washington, the chimney on the rectory fell in the quake and hit two cars. No one was hurt. Meanwhile, at St. Gabriel in Northwest Washington, pieces of the ceiling fell in the sanctuary. In both cases, facilities management employees have been sent in to evaluate the extent of the damage.
Also in the District, the cross on the roof of St. Peter's on Capitol Hill fell. Again, no one was injured in that case.
At Mount Calvary in Forestville, the church has damage to the steeple. In addition, Mount Calvary School has sustained damage.
Principals are being asked to go through their buildings to assess any visible damage.
In Laurel, St. Vincent Pallotti High School, which will open to students on Aug. 30, cancelled all evening activities Aug. 23.
The quake was the largest for the area in more than a century. The epicenter was located some 90 miles south of Washington, D.C. in Mineral, Va. Tremors were reported as far away as New England.
The Archdiocese of Baltimore is reporting that St. Patrick Church in Fells Point is now closed indefinitely after sustaining heavy damage in the quake. The historic church's steeple and bell tower were badly damaged, rendering the church unsafe for occupancy, according to the spokesman for the archdiocese, Sean Caine.
St. Patrick Church was founded in 1792 and the current church was completed in 1898.