Saint Martin de Tours Catholic Church was founded by the Acadian exiles in 1765 when they arrived in St. Martinville. This church was officially blessed as a new church in the Archdiocese of New Orleans. The number of parishioners that this church had, became too overwhelming for the small church to handle. There was a petition to start building a bigger church and it was granted in 1820, two years after the Diocese of Lafayette was formed. This new church was not finished until 1844 but they finally had enough space for all of the parishioners.
If you go inside the church you see many beautiful aspects that you would not normally see in churches anymore. The raised pulpit was one of the unique characteristics that brought people to the church. Priests used raised pulpits back in the day so the congregation could hear the readings and homily. It ensured that the priest’s voice would carry over the crowd to the back of the church. We have to remember that this was a time before technology like microphones was even in somebody’s thought process. The pulpit is still used today because they want to keep their history alive. 200 years after the church was created, St. Martin de Tours had its first American-born priest, Fr. Kenneth R. Morvant. He was also the first priest of Acadian descent. Every priest after him has been of Acadian descent and that has helped keep the culture alive (More of Our Church History).