Latter-day Saint Life

"95 Percent of Our Ward Members Lost Their Homes": An Update on Church Members in Paradise, CA


“It’s amazing how the members are coming together and supporting one another,” said Bishop Robert Harrison.

The wildfire that largely incinerated Paradise, California, offered a stark reminder that Latter-day Saint bishops often shepherd others even while enduring their own trials.

Paradise 1st Ward Bishop Robert Harrison and Paradise 2nd Ward Bishop Troy Mattson have spent the past several days monitoring the welfare of their members, offering spiritual support and coordinating relief efforts with fellow priesthood and Relief Society leaders.

Both bishops lost their own homes to the flames and are counted among the thousands displaced by one of the most destructive wildfires in California's history.

“We got confirmation on Sunday that our home had been completely destroyed,” said Bishop Mattson, a husband and father of four children, ages 10-15. 

Story by Jason Swensen, lead image by James Dimmitt of flames still burning at the site of the charred remains of the Paradise 1st Ward; Church News.

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