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Overnight fire destroys St. Luke's Episcopal, a Goodwood Boulevard landmark for 60 years

5 months 6 days 19 hours ago Saturday, February 17 2024 Feb 17, 2024 February 17, 2024 5:05 AM February 17, 2024 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - A massive fire destroyed part of St. Luke's Episcopal Church on 8833 Goodwood Blvd early Saturday morning.

Officials say an off-duty BRPD officer noticed the fire as they were leaving police headquarters around 1 a.m. The sanctuary was fully engulfed when the Baton Rouge Fire Department arrived at the scene. As firefighters began to put out the fire, part of the structure collapsed, blocking one of the entrances they used to get into the building. Everyone inside at the time evacuated, and firefighters continued to fight the fire from outside the building through the use of ladder trucks.

St. Luke's Episcopal has been a Goodwood Boulevard landmark for over sixty years. The church has seen its fair share of baptisms, weddings, funerals and more. Some members even went out to the church at 2 a.m. during the fire as they watched their church burn.

The school portion of the property was undamaged, but the church was deemed a total loss. The church put out on social media that all events have been canceled. The church plans to hold services each Sunday in the middle school gym for now, including a service at 8:45 a.m. on Feb. 18.

"It makes this a heartbreaking loss, but the church is the people of God," Father Bryan Owen said. "We can go over [to the gym] for a time, but we will continue to be a worshipping community."

Owen wants his congregation to stay positive during these hard times. He says the accident could have been worse, and he's thankful the fire department responded so quickly.

See St. Luke's statement here:

No injuries have been reported. Fire investigators are working to determine the cause.

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