(COVINGTON,LA)- “God Is Bigger.”
This is the mantra of Elise Angelette, choreographer and costume designer for the St. Paul’s Marian Players and daughter of longtime faculty member Denny Charbonnet. Angelette has recently been diagnosed with stage four metastatic breast cancer, but she keeps fighting, thanks to her devout faith in the Lord.
“Stage four cancer is the highest stage level of cancer,” explains SPS Biology teacher John Carambat. “It often means that the cancer has already spread to every organ and every tissue in your body.”
Two years when Angelette was first diagnosed with breast cancer, the St. Paul’s community made quick arrangements to support her during her battle through various fundraising efforts, such as bracelet sales and Mugshots nights. After about a year-long battle, she conquered her cancer and went into remission. When word hit campus at the beginning of the school year that the cancer had returned, President Bro. Ray Bulliard, FSC, quickly asked for the St. Paul’s community to keep the Angelette and Charbonnet families in their prayers.
“It is tragic to hear about that. I do know that through prayer she will recover, and she will make it through with the St. Paul’s community and her family,” said senior Trey Hughes.
A prayer service was held on Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016, in the Alumni Memorial Theatre on St. Paul’s campus. Following the service, a check was presented to Angelette by senior Reagan Hill, symbolizing money donated by the community through GoFundMe for her second round of treatment.
“The prayer service was amazing,” Hill said. “It was very emotional for people. You can tell that God was present and that He will help Mrs. Elise out. Presenting the check made me feel good and it certainly made Mrs. Elise feel good, too.”
With Angelette helping out with the drama department since she was a member of the Marian Players in high school, she has formed a tight relationship with the St. Paul’s community.
“I have grown up on that campus, literally,” Angelette said. “I climbed those trees barefoot, I watched cheerleaders cheer and dance teams dance, and our football team win over and over again…I have spent more time in that theater and on that campus than I actually spent in my own home as a kid growing up in the 80s.”
Angelette has been viewed as as inspiration to the local community, having been profiled by the Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center, as well as Nola Family. While fighting her own battle, she set up the foundation “Buna’s Hope,” which is a non-profit outreach project created to bring love, laughter, and faith to families fighting cancer. Buna’s Hope was created in partnership with Mugshots Bar and Grill and Glory Bound Gyro Co.
Angelette also constantly posts updates and inspirational messages on her blog at every-little-thingblog.com.
“I know what it feels like to be a mother/wife/daughter/sister/friend who just wants to know that, no matter what the trial, my family is going to be alright,” Angelette wrote in her blog.
For now, Angelette continues with her rounds of chemotherapy, and prayers and support from St. Paul’s and friends are booming.
“To think now that they are praying for me cannot be expressed in words,” Angelette said. “Your pack is your family. St. Paul’s has definitely, again and again, taking care of me and loved me like a family. It’s an amazing blessing. I’m happy and proud to be part of the pack.”
Anyone wishing to help Angelette in her battle with cancer can donate to her GoFundMe account. For information on how to help Angelette spread joy to other families who are also battling cancer, visit the Buna’s Hope Foundation website.