Phoenix nuns need your help after fire rips through monastery chapel

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(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

It's a peaceful place where you'll find faith, friendship and what's left from a fire.

Sister Linda surveyed the damage in the chapel at the Our Lady of Guadalupe Monastery in Phoenix, where a fire broke out two weeks ago.

Broken statues. A burned up prayer book. An altar up in flames.

"We've cried numerous times over what was lost, and yet, we know it could have been so much worse," said Sister Linda.

Firefighters believe Christmas lights plugged into a faulty power strip sparked the fire.

One of the reasons the building didn't burn down was because of Sister Linda's decision to jump into action and put out the fire herself.

"It's our home," Sister Linda said. "You see the fire and think, 'What do I do now?' The only thing I could think of was to grab the hose and get water on it - so that's what we did."

Firefighters arrived a short time later and reminded Sister Linda that nuns shouldn't fight fires.

Even though Sister Linda managed to keep the flames from spreading, there was still extensive smoke damage throughout the monastery.

"They think that every room has to be repainted," Sister Linda said. "Some ceilings may have to come out, depending on how far it got into the insulation and attic."

The initial estimate to fix all the damage is between $600,000 and $1 million.

It's money the monastery, which is located northwest of 83rd Avenue and Thomas Road, doesn't have.

In addition, the monastery won't be able to have any retreats on the property for the next four to six months, which was one of the ways it raised money.

Another problem is that they don't have a place to hold mass, so Sister Linda is hoping to build a make-shift chapel out front.

"We need to have some way of protection for people who come, so that's been a real struggle," said Sister Linda.

Sister Linda and friends realize families are extremely busy this time of year, but they could sure use a little help this Christmas.

If you are interested in helping the Our Lady of Guadalupe Monastery you can visit

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

Jason Barry
Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

Click to learn more about Jason.

Jason Barry

Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

He is a nine-time Rocky Mountain Emmy Award winner who is best known for his weekly Dirty Dining reports, which highlight local restaurants with major health code violations.

Jason was born in Los Angeles and graduated from the University of Miami.

An avid sports fan, Jason follows the Diamondbacks, Cardinals and Suns with his wife, Karen, and son, Joshua.

His favorite stories to cover are the station’s Pay it Forward segments, which reward members of the community with $500 for going ‘above and beyond’ the call of duty to help others.

Jason, started his career at WBTW-TV in Florence, SC before moving to WALA-TV in Mobile, AL, was named the Associated Press Reporter of the Year in 2002.

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