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Fire destroys 'treasured' historic Catholic church in Texas
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Odessa church destroyed by fire. Updated: McKenzie Nelson. Please join me in keeping the people of this historic parish in your prayers today as they try to piece together this tragedy.
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The bishop, who spoke to reporters near the grounds of the charred parish church July 30, noted that the community is "broken hearted" about this loss. He said the church was "truly one of our treasured churches" because of its history, tradition and the love and the faith of the people, which has not diminished and will grow stronger "out of these ashes.
He said the parish community will continue to come together and pray and support one another. He also noted that the parishioners had been busy making plans to celebrate the parish's th anniversary next year. The bishop said he was grateful for those who risked their lives to save the tabernacle and thankful for the work of many volunteer firefighters.
He said parishioners will hopefully be able to worship nearby and when asked if the parish would rebuild, he said he thought they would because the church "means so much" to the parishioners. The church was designed in the shape of a Latin cross with a bell tower on each side. It contained more than 20 stained-glass windows.
Construction was completed in February and most of the carpentry was done by parishioners.click here
Odessa church destroyed by fire
The church was dedicated three months later. In , the church received official recognition with a Texas Historical Marker. The faithful of the Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments sect lay piled on top of one another on the floor of their church in this remote corner of Uganda near the Rwandan border. The corpses of men, women and children were stacked up, a grizzly heap of bones and melted flesh.
Some were hunched into a tight ball of pain, others lay on their backs, hands facing the sky. A heart-shaped plaque sprinkled with shards of glass lay on the ground outside.
More than 200 Ugandan sect members die in church fire
The inscription read: "Waiting for Jesus". The members of the sect, nearly all former Catholics, had twice been told that the world would end and their devotion to the Virgin Mary would be rewarded in heaven.
Last Friday the congregation, estimated to number at least , had a final feast followed by hours of singing and chanting. Then they were doused in petrol and died a gruesome death inside a sealed church in Kanungu. Their numbers are only estimates, as the bodies have yet to be moved, but local officials say the death toll may be much higher. The skeletons of dozens of children were among the dead.
Historic Church In The Heights Heavily Damaged By 2-Alarm Fire – Houston Public Media
As forensic police arrived from the capital, Kampala, it is still unclear whether this was mass suicide or mass murder. Many local people believe the followers were misled and then killed by their leaders.
The doors of the makeshift church, measuring 40 metres by 10, were locked and the windows were nailed from the outside. Most of the people burnt to death in front of the door as they appeared to attempt to escape. Rutemba Didis was one of the first to come on the scene. From his house he heard the explosion as the force of the blaze burst through the windows and collapsed the galvanised iron roof.