Falling tiles have churchgoers looking heavenward

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho (AP) - Looking heavenward is not uncommon at a northern Idaho church, but normally it's not to keep an eye out for tiles falling from the steeple.

The Coeur d'Alene Press reports that police cordoned off areas around St. Thomas Catholic Church earlier this week after cement tiles from the 170-foot steeple fell off.

Officials say the tiles are thin and can sail through the air, with one even found in the street. Two streets have been blocked, as have the church's front doors.

Father William Crowley says the tiles are probably originals, making them 102 years old, and they likely came loose with age.

He says it will cost $172,000 to fix the steeple.

He says church services won't be affected because worshippers can use a side entrance.