Over $1 Million Donated to Louisiana Black Churches Destroyed by Arson After Notre Dame Fire

St. Mary Baptist in Port Barre, La., was destroyed in a fire on March 26.CreditCreditWilliam Widmer for The New York Times

The fire at Notre-Dame cathedral on Monday prompted immediate pledges of millions of euros to help rebuild it. On Tuesday, it spurred donations to do the same for much smaller places of worship thousands of miles away that were recently destroyed by arson.

crowdfunding campaign for three fire-ravaged black churches in Louisiana received more than $850,000 after it was widely shared on social media on Tuesday. Many users noted that while hundreds of millions of euros had already been pledged to rebuild the famous cathedral, the small churches in Louisiana were still struggling.

“These communities need to know that people care about them and what they’re going through,” Jessica Piombo, a professor who lives in Monterey, Calif., wrote on the campaign’s page.

“Every little bit counts.”

The campaign was posted on GoFundMe last Wednesday by the Seventh District Baptist Association, which includes 54 Baptist churches in southwest Louisiana, including the three that were burned. The association noted that donations would go to rebuilding and replacing what was destroyed, from pews to sound systems and musical instruments.

A screen shot of the campaign’s page from early Tuesday morning showed that it had raised $92,939. That number shot upward as the day wore on, including many smaller donations. More than 18,000 people had donated as of Wednesday morning, and a spokesman for GoFundMe said the campaign had received donations from all 50 states.

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Source: New York Times