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God Sent an Asphalt Paver to a Baptist Church to Pave Their Parking Lot

jesus parking lot paver

Cleveland 19, a television news channel in Cleveland, Ohio, reported this story:

A local pastor said a paving company did a shoddy job on their church driveway and will not return their calls or their emails to fix it.

Pastor Joe Dossa said they’ve been praying about a situation at Mount Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church.

“The Lord tells us whatsoever you do, do it heartily,” said Dossa.

He tells 19 News last August he was approached by some men who told him they were from Public Paving out of Northeastern Massachusetts and could give him a discount on fixing the driveways and parking lot in Grafton.

“I thought, well, thank you Lord what a Godsend, we were thinking about asphalt and you sent an asphalt truck this way,” said Dossa.

He tells 19 News they made a verbal contract, wrote a check, and then four men showed up and started the work.

He tells 19 News, right away he and others noticed that something wasn’t right.

“There were some holes in the pavement. The edges weren’t really true and straight, they backed their dump truck and left tire marks in the asphalt,” said Dossa. “It was very uneven and of a poor quality and not laid with a machine so to speak,” he said.

Dossa said they spent about $25,000 for the job. When he asked the workers to come back and fix the problems, a man who identified himself Levi Stanley told him to hire someone else to fix their work and that Public Paving would reimburse them. But Dossa said they implored Public Paving workers to come back and do the job right but said they never showed up. Dossa said Stanley kept making excuses.

“He told me after 6 months, it seems like the lot would heal itself overtime,” said Dossa.

Evidently, God is not omniscient and didn’t check references. Either that, or the asphalt pavers who work for Jesus are unskilled, unqualified, and con-artists. Or, as is common with preachers, this pastor was looking for the Jesus discount from Public Paving. Or maybe, just maybe, Jesus was just testing the pastor’s faith.

Bruce’s advice to Pastor Dossa:

  • Don’t be a cheap ass
  • If something sounds too good to be true, it IS too good to be true
  • Get multiple bids for the paving project
  • You often get what you pay for
  • Check references
  • Personally look at other projects a company has done
  • Have a signed contract before work commences
  • Don’t give the paver all the money up front

Or, you can just let Jesus take the wheel. How did that work out for you?


Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

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  1. Avatar

    Whoa. We had someone stop to tell us that their paving company had a job canceled etc etc. Well, I couldn’t find their company listed, not exactly under the name they gave. Needless to say, we didn’t go for the cheap job. And the church pastor paid $25,000? That was a total scam.

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      Yup, bad idea to deal with anyone who stops by with an unsolicited product or service to unload. First and last time that happened to me, it was a guy selling topsoil out of his pickup truck. It was cheap (maybe 5-10 bucks for a couple of yards), but it also came with a lot of free ants (who subsequently overran my front yard). 😮

  2. Avatar

    We have heard the joyful sound:
    Jesus paves! Jesus paves!
    Spread the tidings all around:
    Jesus paves! Jesus paves!
    Bear the news to every land,
    Climb the steeps and cross the waves;
    Onward!—’tis our Lord’s command;
    Jesus paves! Jesus paves!

    Sorry, guys, I couldn’t resist once I got this earworm going….

    I guess the Lamb’s Book of Life is NOT the place to go for business references….

  3. Avatar

    “4 guys came out…” I’m imagining 3 stooges along with Shemp.

    “C’mon knucklehead! Put your back into it just to make the Devil mad! Nyuk nyuk”

  4. Avatar

    That Baptist pastor has to be among the most cheapest and gullible person around. Why have some out-of-state company you know nothing about do your paving for your parking lot when you can have an local company do the work. Also, the fact their Facebook page doesn’t have that many recent updates should be a warning sign itself. By having a local company do the work, you are keeping the money in the community and not lining the pockets of some out-of-state grifters.

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    In my area, back in the 1990s we were warned about itinerant “slur” pavers, if your driveway was already paved they’d charge you to essentially paint it black again. I don’t wanna know what would happen if it started out dirt. I guess this pastor didn’t get that memo either.

  6. Avatar
    Brian Vanderlip

    “Pastor Joe Dossa said they’ve been praying about a situation at Mount Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church.”
    Man oh man, gotta dilute that gene pool! Prey on it! Send them Sprite! That’ll pave the way…

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Bruce Gerencser