133-year-old church needs donations to keep century-long mission alive

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) –  A church that’s been giving back to the community for more than 130 years is now asking for help. St. Paul’s United Methodist Church is in need of major repairs to keep their mission going.

St. Paul’s United Methodist Church has sat here in the Huffman Historic District in Dayton since 1883. Over time it’s changed dramatically, but one thing has always remained the same–the church’s generosity. Now, major wear and tear to the building is getting in the way of that mission.

“We’ve always been a mission church,” church administrator Joan Johnson said. “We’re always in mission for the people around us.”

Joan Johnson has been a part of the church’s mission since birth. Growing up in the church, even getting married here. Now, she’s the church’s administrator.

“It’s a constant challenge,” Johnson said. “Keeping a building up that’s this old.”

Over time, an unstable roof and water damage left behind these stains on the ceilings. It’s same room where the church once housed dozens of people escaping the Great Dayton Flood of 1913. Not only a house of worship, but a piece of local history that Johnson doesn’t want to see wear away.

“This can’t happen through our normal budget,” Johnson said. “So we’re reaching out and asking for help.”

The church needs to replace at least 3-hundred slates on the roof–an estimated cost of $13,500. It’s an amount of money that’s not easy to come up with on $200,000 yearly budget. Johnson reached out to local residents through a letter for help. So far they’ve raised over $2,000.

Church officials have planned for a fundraising event on October 1, 2016 at the Life Enrichment Center. For more information on the event and how you can help, visit their website.

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