It's because of Bernard Norris' curiosity, the 83-year-old said, that he saw the accident take place at Christ United Methodist Church on Friday afternoon.
"If I see somebody tearing down a building, I'm going to stand there and look," said Norris, a congregant and janitor at the church on Chase Street in East Baltimore.
So when the last wall in a rowhouse being demolished next door did not come down peacefully, but tumbled onto the church roof instead, Norris was watching from the church's back door.
Norris and the hundreds of other congregants are still waiting for a full assessment of the damage, the church's pastor, the Rev. Twanda Prioleau, said Tuesday.
Norris and three others were in the church at the time, Prioleau said, but no one was injured. The damage has left the 19th-century building closed, she said, forcing congregants to go elsewhere for prayer.