Hallowed Halls of Greater New Orleans

by Deborah Burst

Foreword by Anne Rice

From New Orleans to the Northshore, stately churches, grand cathedrals and rustic chapels act as coffers for generations of history and devotion. Dedicated to deep-seated traditions, and Louisiana’s allegiance to its European roots, the state is divided into parishes rather than counties. Follow Deborah Burst as she explores the defiant spirit of early parishioners battling disease, pestilent weather and economic depression in building their heavenly havens. Meet today’s faithful followers who reverently serve and protect the church, along with preservationists who pass the spiritual torch from one generation to the next.

Anne Rice fans will find cherished memories of her life growing up in St. Alphonsus church and its profound influence on her life. A New Orleans native and legendary author, she was mesmerized by the baroque beauty of St. Alphonsus church. Born Howard Allan O’Brien, a descendant of Irish immigrants, Anne grew up in the Irish Channel and was baptized in St. Alphonsus Church, now known as St. Alphonsus Art and Cultural Center.

“I’ve always been in love with my hometown—just in love with it enough to describe it in book after book after book and keep going back to its atmosphere and ambiance as a source of inspiration. The baroque beauty of St. Alphonsus, its profoundly Italian feeling and its exquisite excess of ornament will forever influence my life and my writing. I grew to love the sensuality and evocative quality of its heavily figurative art—the story told in the stained-glass windows and the Stations of the Cross and the stories represented by so many statues of the saints.”

Click through the portfolio below to see several photo excerpts from Hallowed Halls of Greater New Orleans.

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This book is dedicated to the beauty and spirituality of these hallowed halls but is in no way a religious voyage into any particular faith. More than a chronicle of historic timelines, each chapter offers a snapshot of the community, and a sense of place, from a pastor who ministers his flock over a pint at the local pub to an iconic Cathedral graced with a visit from Pope John Paul II.

The churches are not only foundations for religious guidance, but architectural wonder as well.

Deborah details the artistry in each chapter along with her own color photos. “Enamored with the people and architecture, I wanted to capture that euphoric moment when you open the door for the first time, and you stand in awe. The camera was my muse, and with every picture, it became an obsession to capture every detail.”

 “’Hallowed Halls of Greater New Orleans.’ Congratulations to author Deborah Burst on the publication of his very interesting new book on New Orleans churches and cathedrals and sanctuaries. Highly recommended to all.”

Anne RiceNew Orleans native, lauded best selling author with more than 30 published books including her latest release "The Wolves of Midwinter."

“Deb Burst sees things (and knows things) about New Orleans that most people don’t. Here, she reveals the stories behind some of the region’s most memorable structures.”

Lee FroehlichManaging Editor, Playboy Magazine

“I’ve admired Deb Burst’s research, writing and photography since she was anundergraduate student at Tulane University and Preservation in Print was the first to publish her stories about historic architecture and neighborhoods.  Hallowed Halls will definitely be the bible about Louisiana houses of worship.”

Mary FitzpatrickEditor Preservation in Print Magazine

“Deb Burst is as much a New Orleans fixture as Mardi Gras, Jazz Fest, and an ice cold Hurricane at Pat O’s.  You can see her passion in every word she writes and every photograph she snaps.  She is a true renaissance woman.”

Mark A. NewmanFormer Editor in Chief, Southern Breeze Magazine

“Bells chiming, steeples beckoning, and stained glass glimmering…  Hallowed Halls of Greater New Orleans offers an exclusive tour of these historical structures.  Deb captures these iconic treasure and their majestic beauty in both her prose and photos.”

Mona L. HaydenEditor/Publisher, Louisiana Road Trips Magazine

“Euphoria! Got home and, voila, “Hallowed Halls” was in the mailbox. Just gobbled up the Trinity chapter. THANKS SO MUCH, DEB! You surely capture the spirit of both the architecture and life in Trinity and on Algiers Point. I wonder how many times I’ll re-read. Reading the chapter flooded me with emotion about one of the high points of my life.”

Kelly BedardFormer pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church

“LOVE LOVE LOVE the book. Finally got a chance to sit down and read through it a couple of weeks after your prompt shipping. Brilliant!! I am thrilled for you and hope it’s the beginning of continuing success.”

Laurie TriplettAuthor of award winning book, “Gimme Some Sugar”

“I admire you as a writer. Also I like how you think. I have only one EBOOK that is the “Hallowed Halls of Greater New Orleans” and this translated to Spanish. I really like your style, the narrative is seductive, pictures give magnificent to mind.”

Nelly Anabel Garcia AguirreSpanish Author

“I received your book in the mail, it’s wonderful. Thank you very much for getting such lovely memories out of me and sharing them with your readers. Best of luck with the book.”

Paul SanchezNew Orleans songwriter, singer, and musician

“So special! Lovely new book, thank you for your contribution to loveliness and the antiquity of our heavenly Louisiane!”


Anne LottLover of the written word and daughter of a Louisiana Poet Laureate