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Baton Rouge firm will design two churches

LAKE CHARLES — In a major development in its steps toward hurricane recovery and a sign of hope for Catholics throughout Southwest Louisiana, the Diocese of Lake Charles announced on Monday, April 26, a slate of architects selected to rebuild schools and churches destroyed by Hurricane Laura. In all, two Catholic churches and three schools will be rebuilt, with local firms selected to design the schools.

Upon announcing the selection, His Excellency, the Most Reverend Glen John Provost, Bishop of Lake Charles, said, “We have reached a decisive moment in the recovery of the Diocese of Lake Charles. In just eight months following the devastation of Hurricane Laura, I am pleased to see that today we are selecting architects. This is a positive step in the right direction. We are making real progress to return our people to the celebration of Mass and the Sacraments and our students to a permanent learning environment that benefits their formation and development.” 

The following local architecture firms have been selected to design new Catholic schools: 

  • St. Louis Catholic High School, Lake Charles — Champeaux Evans Hotard + RHH Architects, APAC, A Joint Venture
  • St. Margaret of Scotland Catholic School, Lake Charles — Porche|May Architects + Domain Architecture, A Joint Venture 
  • Our Lady’s Catholic School, Sulphur — Vincent-Shows-Gautreaux Architects APALLC

And for the following churches, the architect will be Hoffpauir Studio, LLC from Baton Rouge, a firm with extensive experience designing churches and other houses of worship: 

  • Christ the King Catholic Church, Lake Charles
  • St. Pius X Catholic Church, Ragley

“We are very pleased to announce that after reviewing outstanding qualifications of the firms who were selected as finalists and participating in two rounds of interviews with the pastors and principals of Our Lady’s School, St. Margaret of Scotland Catholic School and St. Louis Catholic High School, the Diocese of Lake Charles is engaging all local firms to design these schools,” said Father Ruben Buller, Chief of Recovery and Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia of the Diocese. “The level of expertise and experience brought to the table was incredible and I am confident these selections will result in facilities to serve our Catholic School families well for many decades yet to come."

"Likewise, the firm of Hoffpauir Studio has extensive experience with churches and church facilities and will produce equally outstanding work for the parishioners of Christ the King and St. Pius X,” Father Buller continued. "Enhancing these structures will be the work of Michael Raia, Design Consultant with Studio io in Austin, incorporating liturgical catechesis in the design of all of our new structures. Moving forward with retaining our architectural firms and liturgical designer is a giant step forward in the recovery of the Diocese of Lake Charles, as we remain ‘One Diocese … One Church’.”

These architects are tasked with meeting with stakeholders immediately to begin the design process for these projects. With regards to St. Louis Catholic High School, FEMA has completed its site visit to the severely damaged campus, and has found the damage report prepared by the Diocese in alignment with its onsite assessment. 

In total, the Diocese has 505 damaged structures on 68 diocesan properties. Repairs on many of these are completed, already underway, in the process of being combined into zones to enhance efficiency, or are in the scoping process.


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