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Winds Topple Statue Of Jesus Atop NJ School Building

Strong winds topple Jesus statue in Orange, N.J. (credit: CBS 2)

Strong winds topple Jesus statue in Orange, N.J. (credit: CBS 2)

ORANGE, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — High winds knocked over a statue of Jesus Christ on the roof of what was once a New Jersey Catholic school.

The statue stood on the roof of the St. John School in Orange. It came to rest at about a 90-degree angle, and workers took it down Wednesday afternoon.

Newark Archdiocese spokesman James Goodness said the statue, which is about 25 years old, was a replacement for the school’s original statue, which also was toppled in a storm.

“It was actually leaning on the roof of the building because the statue was located on top of the building. So it had come out of its base, definitely needed to be secured and taken down,” Goodness told 1010 WINS.

The St. John School was closed in June because of declining enrollment. Goodness said the Orange Board of Education leases classroom space in the building, but no students were in danger.

“It was in danger of falling, but we made sure that everything was secured and that there was no real danger to anybody,” Goodness said.

Goodness pointed out that the statue could have done some serious damage.

“This could have been something very serious, and fortunately God was working with us and made sure it didn’t harm anyone,” told CBS 2’s Dave Carlin.

Classes at the school were canceled Wednesday, but will resume on Thursday.

(TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)