BASILE – More than a year after their home in Mamou flooded, the parsonage at First Baptist Church, Basile in which Pastor Mike Fontenot and his wife Jessica were staying, has been destroyed by a fire.
Fontenot said the blaze happened between 2 and 2:15 p.m. Wednesday, July 11, but no one was inside. The couple, who live in the parsonage only on the weekends, reside at their house in Mamou during the rest of the week.
And just like when their Mamou home flooded, they have experienced an outpouring of support from the community and the state. The couple is grateful for the concern shown by others since the fire likely was started by a lightning strike.
“Jessica and I are well, praise God,” Mike Fontenot told the Baptist Message. “The house is a total loss but that can be replaced. We did not have insurance on our personal belongings because we did not know we needed it due to our first time in a parsonage. So we are trusting God to help replace these things when we rebuild.”
Jessica Fontenot, who is human resources specialist for Louisiana Baptists, took to Facebook and expressed gratitude for the encouraging words offered.
“I wanted to take this opportunity before I go to bed tonight to thank each and every one who texted, called, messaged or commented to Mike and I about prayers and offering ‘helping hands,’” she wrote Wednesday evening. “Words can’t explain how truly grateful and blessed we are to have y’all in our lives!
“My heart does break for our Basile church family because they have had that house since the early 1950s,” she continued. “Many of the church members have some great memories there. Some have gotten married there. And the church had just had the parsonage renovated from ‘top to bottom’ last year when Mike became the pastor.
“So, tonight it is a bittersweet time,” she continued. “But, we are so blessed that no one was injured from this fire (lightning strike) today. God is good ALL the time in EVERY circumstance.”
Donations can be sent to First Baptist Church of Basile, P.O. Box 336, Basile, LA 70515.