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Catholic Diocese estimates $60-100 million in damages following Hurricane Laura

Posted at 8:44 PM, Sep 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-29 21:50:04-04

Faith plays a large role in the culture of Acadiana and Southwest Louisiana.

Now, people of faith are working to rebuild their houses of worship.

In the Diocese of Lake Charles, Hurricane Laura damaged and destroyed churches and rectories across the diocese's five-parish area.

Since then, people from Acadiana and elsewhere have been helping rescue artifacts from those churches.

Bishop Glen Provost says 16 buildings are a total loss and half of those are churches.

"In this tragedy, we've experienced the love of neighbor helping neighbor and strangers helping strangers," Provost said.

The diocese is working with its insurance company, Catholic Charities, and community partners to begin the cleanup process and to start planning how to move forward. The Bishop says in times of tragedy, it's important to keep the faith.

"God teaches us something very important in every tragedy and that we have something to learn and to be appreciative for. We understand what's really important in life," Bishop Provost said.

He expects it to take years until the diocese fully recovers.

"It really is a mammoth task that faces us. I'm confident we will be able to, but it will take a lot of time and a lot of help," the Bishop said.

Despite the loss, worship is still happening. According to the Bishop, there are roughly 90,000 Catholics in the Diocese of Lake Charles.

"Even the churches that were destroyed, masses are being held and celebrated," explained Bishop Provost. "All of our priests are engaged."

Click here if you're interested in donating to the Diocese of Lake Charles to help in the recovery efforts.

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