Roofer uses federal COVID-19 relief to donate new roof to decades-old church

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Every time it rains, the pastor at Jerusalem Temple Apostolic Faith Assembly Church on East 54th Street on the north side is worried.

The roof in the back part of the building has been leaking for years, but a helping hand during the COVID-19 pandemic helped bring about a fix.

This new roof would have cost the congregation from $25,000-30,000, according to the company that did the work.

“It probably would have taken me a couple years to raise the money give or take with everything we have” said Derek Jefferson, the church’s pastor.

In the church office and classroom area, almost every ceiling has some water damage.

“Well, our back roof is terrible, has about seven or eight leaks,” Jefferson said.

The leaks had reached a tipping point, and the church had to do something, even a temporary fix just to stop the leaks. That ‘s when Joe Guidone of Horning Roofing and Sheet Metal Co. came to look at the roof.

“I set my ladder up, got up on the roof and saw the condition of the roof. I said, ‘No, we are going to replace this man’s roof.'”

The church has been around for decades, and the years have taken a toll. Two years ago, the congregation raised enough money for new shingles over the sanctuary, but they didn’t have the money for major repairs.

Guidone explained why he wanted to help: “For us to be able to help somebody in the community that is in need.”

The roofing company had laid off some people as jobs slowed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Our company got some COVID money from the government, and we decided to utilize it in a very helpful way,” Guidone said.

Using Payroll Protection Program money from the federal government, the company kept people working and donated the roof to the church.

The pastor said, “First of all, I do believe in miracles and I think Mr. Joe was brought to us. I think it was God’s divine connection.”