Praise Temple in Biloxi damaged when two cars go through building

Praise Temple Biloxi, a church on Division Street, was heavily damaged Friday when not one but two vehicles went through the building because of a crash.

Natasha Pickett, co-pastor at the church, said she and her husband, Jakavious Pickett, got a call from Biloxi Police while they were preparing to join the funeral services for community leader Carmelita Scott, who died last week. Pickett delivered the eulogy.

A photo Jakavious Pickett posted to social media shows extensive damage to the church.

He said he got a call from Biloxi Police as he was preparing to enter the church for the service, so he didn’t answer, but they called right back. He had Natasha Pickett take the call, to find out that a two-vehicle crash on Division Street came through the church building.

Fortunately, Jakavious Pickett said, no one was injured, but firefighters told the Picketts that the building is so structurally damaged that it probably will be condemned.

Natasha Pickett said she and her husband have yet to see the church for themselves because they had to leave Scott’s funeral service to travel to the Delta, where they were attending the funeral service for Pickett’s stepmother.

Services this weekend were held virtually and the church plans a service on the beach next weekend.

Jakavious Pickett said they have been in the building about eight years.

“It was a shell, but over the course of the eight years, we had it rebuilt,” he said. He’s hoping he’ll be back on the Coast in time to see the church before nightfall.

Praise Temple has been active on the Coast in the eight years it has served the community. In addition to services, the church has a food pantry, holds empowerment sessions at Henry Beck Park and offers a computer lab to help people.

“We’ve done a lot for that community,” he said.

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