Individuals attending Roman Catholic church buildings within the Baton Rouge space are being requested to contribute to the continued restoration of St. Joseph Abbey and Seminary School close to Covington, which was devastated by floodwaters in March of 2016.
Bishop Robert W. Muench, of the Diocese of Baton Rouge, has approved a particular assortment in any respect Saturday and Sunday (Dec. 9 and 10) Plenty within the diocese to profit the abbey and seminary.
The St. Joseph campus sustained about $30 million in injury through the flood. Heavy rain in areas north of St. Tammany Parish on March eleven and 12 of final yr brought on the Bogue Falaya River to rise to document ranges. The abbey, situated within the St. Benedict group, abuts the river.
The quickly-rising water entered 30 buildings on the sprawling campus, with some getting as much as two ft. Whereas the long-lasting campus’ church nave didn’t flood, the basement took on a number of ft of water. That destroyed electrical and air con techniques, inflicting abbey leaders to shut the constructing to the general public for nearly three months.
Having not flooded because the nice Mississippi River Valley flood of 1927, the abbey didn’t have flood insurance coverage in March 2016. It has since addressed that challenge, nevertheless it should overcome the present losses by itself.
Some federal cash has been made out there to cowl campus buildings and gear which might be strictly deemed instructional – versus spiritual – in nature. Up to now, $6.1 million has been acquired from FEMA and extra could possibly be made out there, abbey officers stated.
The abbey has up to now raised about $9 million in donations to be put towards the continued repairs to the buildings on its 1,200-acre campus, officers stated. The Baton Rouge initiative will bolster that drive.
In the meantime, the seminary school and elements of the abbey are again in operation. With greater than one hundred forty college students, the abbey is likely one of the largest Catholic seminary schools in america.
Repairs to the campus monastery have been accomplished earlier this yr. Archbishop Gregory Aymond attended a particular ceremony in July to reopen the constructing.
One primary constructing – Borromeo Corridor – stays out of service. A brand new library to exchange the one worn out by the flood stays beneath development and must be accomplished in 2018. A brand new auditorium and a brand new welcome middle are additionally within the works.
Repairs to the campus retreat middle, which usually hosts about three,000 friends annually, are nearing completion. James Shields, the abbey’s communications director, stated retreats ought to resume on the middle in January.
Bishop Muench, a St. Joseph Seminary School alumnus, stated in a letter to Baton Rouge Catholics that the abbey has had “a profound affect on the lifetime of the Catholic Church within the Deep South.
“For over one hundred twenty five years, the monks of the abbey have been educating and forming younger males as candidates for the priesthood,” Muench wrote. “This has been their main mission and their lasting legacy.”
Given the pressing want for clergymen, he stated the work…