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Then some people came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. And when they could not bring him to Jesus because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him; and after having dug through it, they let down the mat on which the paralytic lay.
(Mark 2:3-4) 

By Rev. Marty Levesque

Roof trusses, crank beams, and hurricane pins. Some of the things I didn’t learn in seminary.

There is much that must come together to keep the walls of a church standing against the winds of a blizzard. The structural integrity of any building begins of course with the foundation, but the roof, interestingly enough, is just as important to keeping walls standing and a building functional.

The roof has more than one function. It sheds water and snow to prevent either from standing on the roof surface and increasing the live load on the roof structure. The roof protects the building interior from the effects of weather elements such as rain, wind, sun, heat, and snow. It also provides thermal insulation to keep heat in during the winter and cool during the summer. But most importantly, it holds the walls together and provides stability to the structure.

This December and January the slope roof and flat roof along with windows are being installed at All Saints Waterloo’s new church build. This will seal up the building allowing heat inside so that electrical, HVAC and plumbing can begin inside the structure. Interestingly, while the structure begins with the foundation and moves up, the electrical and HVAC begin at the top and work their way down.

From foundation to walls to roof, the structural integrity of any building comprises all three components. And now that all three are almost finished, it is time to move inside and begin to form the space that will welcome all, just hopefully through the front door and not lowered through the roof.

Rev. Marty Levesque is the rector of All Saints', Waterloo.