Third Black Church Set On Fire in Louisiana in Ten Days

Federal authorities are now leading the investigation into the cause of three fires in historically black churches in southern Louisiana, according to NPR. The first fire was set at the St. Mary Baptist Church in Port Barre on March 26 in the St. Landry Parish near Lafayette. The local fire department said that investigators have “identified suspicious elements in each case and those elements are being thoroughly probed.” A second fire was set at the Greater Union Baptist Church in Opelousas last Tuesday and a third fire at the Mount Pleasant Baptist Church was set on Thursday. They have not determined if the fires are connected or if they are a result of arson. “There is clearly something happening in this community,” State Fire Marshal H. Browning said in a statement. “That is why it is imperative that the citizens of this community be part of our effort to figure out what it is.”