Resurrection of St. Paul
By Cassandra Favre
Jul 12, 2013, 18:32
An artistís rendering of the future St. Paul Chapel in Pass Christian, which is designed to look like the original structure built at the site in 1881. That church was destroyed by Hurricane Camille in 1969. The replacement built in 1972 was heavily damaged during Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and the Diocese of Biloxi finally tore down the remnants just before Christmas 2010.
An old wound is being mended; construction has begun on the new St. Paul's Chapel on Scenic Dr. in Pass Christian.
On Dec. 21, 2010, to parishioners' dismay, the St. Paul Catholic Church, built in 1972, was demolished. The congregation had even argued the church's historical significance in court.
At the time, the Catholic Diocese of Biloxi cited the significant damage caused by Hurricane Katrina and determined it would be too costly to rebuild. Bishop Roger Morin pledged $1 million to build a new chapel.
"Everyone is really excited," Father Mike Austin, pastor of Holy Family Parish, said on Thursday. "We have had a lot of positive feedback about the little chapel on the beach. The chapel will be refurbished with artifacts from the church that Hurricane Katrina damaged. Our most treasured piece is a full stained glass window that came from the church that Hurricane Camille got."
"The church will be open every day, Mass two days a week and special services." Father Austin added. "The chapel is scheduled to finished by the end of March 2014."
"The new chapel will look just like the old church that Hurricane Camille took down," Pass Christian Mayor Leo "Chipper" McDermott said Thursday.
That chapel was built in 1881.
"The total cost is about $1 million," McDermott said. "There will be about 200 seats and mass will be on Tuesdays and Thursdays."
"When they didn't build back, it was devastating to this community," said McDermott. "This is a big thing, the new chapel will look good and serve a good purpose."