Evangel House

605 South College Drive 
Lafayette, LA 70503

337 266-9686

Mark Barrentine

12 - 19


Call admissions department for current tuition.

Evangel House™ Therapeutic Boarding Academy is a Christian residential program, designed to help deal with behavior problems, family problems, poor school performance, mild drug or alcohol abuse, and legal problems for troubled teen girls ages 12-19. We provide professional Christian counseling, accredited academics, a structured home environment, and a Biblically based coping skills curriculum. This balanced Christian approach is provided in a long term (12-18 month) group home setting.

Parents often consider our program as a Christian based alternative to boarding schools, boot camp, drug rehab centers, or schools for troubled teens to deal with behavior problems. Our program is also designed to deal with mild mood disorders such as depression, anxiety, ADHD, and bipolar disorder. We take a comprehensive, holistic approach to these problems from a distinctly Christian based focus.

The problems teens and their families face today can be overwhelming. Parents are struggling more than ever to keep their children on the right path amidst social pressures, pop culture, and the noise and distractions of today's fast paced world. When parents begin to notice their daughters making poor decisions, choosing the wrong friends, and becoming more and more attracted to destructive behaviors, there is hope. Evangeline Christian Home and School for Girls was created to provide Christian-based solutions for troubled teen girls and their families.

Printable Brochure

Admissions Application
Therapeutic Boarding School
Help for Troubled Teen Girls

This process can take anywhere from two days to two weeks

Program is designed to deal with mood disorders such as depression, anxiety, ADHD, and bipolar disorder.

At our alternative boarding school, we will integrate the psychological, emotional, spiritual and the educational needs of your daughter. We believe academic success is essential for long-term behavior change.

We believe educational growth is linked to emotional, social, and spiritual growth. While emphasis is placed on academic growth, in a therapeutic boarding school such as ours, we strive to balance emphasis on the behaviors surrounding admission, emotional, social and psychological issues. Our goal is to present biblical solutions for the whole person.

- Our Christian Boarding School Offers:

Individualized Education Planning for Troubled Teens

10:1 Student Teacher Ratio

a Holistic, Integrated Christian Approach to Education

Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), and the Commission on International and Trans-Regional Accreditation (CITA) through Lighthouse Christian Academy distance learning program.

College and Career preparation

A General Equivalency Diploma (GED) track, and/or fast track diploma is available.
- Individualized Education Planning

Psychological testing results, combined with psychosocial assessments, and academic assessments assist our team in planning the best path for your daughter. This is a key benefit of our therapeutic boarding school. The options include accredited middle school and high school, advanced coursework, or GED planning. College and Career Planning services are integrated into the education plan for those preparing to transition into young adulthood.

- Accredited Curriculum

For those that are in grades 6-12, or those who will pursue a college preparatory curriculum, we use a distance learning school that allows for individually paced learning through Lighthouse Christian Academy. In this program, we use the Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) Curriculum, published by the School of Tomorrow. This program and curriculum is ideally suited to the year-round open admissions school setting our program for teen girls provides. This approach to education is outcome based. That is, instead of your daughter being passed on to the next level based on the needs of the entire class, she will be required to master a skill as an individual before being passed to the next concept. With an outcome based education system like ours, the focus changes from ‘passing’ to ‘learning’. Likewise, the focus changes from ‘grade level’ to ‘knowledge and skill’. The goal of your daughter’s education with us will be to build essential academic skills where necessary. Her skill level will be assessed, and based on her career objectives and psychological needs; an individualized education plan will be tailored to accommodate her long-term goals. Through the outcome based education we offer, in addition to improved standardized test scores, your daughter will have gained the confidence needed to face and overcome everyday academic challenges far beyond our program.

Your daughter will either work toward completion of her current grade level, or if in high school, will earn credits in Lighthouse Christian Academy curriculum while with us. LCA is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), and the Commission on International and Trans-Regional Accreditation (CITA). LCA manages your daughter’s transcripts, and will issue their High School Diploma if she graduates high school with us.

In most cases, we have seen residents ‘catch-up’ on parts of their education missed due to suspensions, expulsions, or behavioral problems. In other cases, we have seen girls excel far beyond their grade level, and even advance up to two grade levels. Most girls improve their scores on ACT and SAT college entrance exams.

Note: To view our Program Schedule and to see a sample day at our learning center, visit www.EvangelHouse.Intranets.com and enter as a guest at the “Just Visiting” section.

- Advanced Coursework Option

Our learning center environment offers the opportunity for highly motivated students to participate in distance learning through the University of Nebraska’s Independent Study High School. Additional fees apply, but advanced coursework in over 100 subjects is available for those who wish to earn extra course credit. These courses are offered in two venues through our learning center: Print or Online E-Graded.

- General Equivalency Diploma Option

In some cases, for older teens and young women, completing High School through a General Equivalency Diploma (GED) is a desirable option. We accommodate this in our learning center through the State of Louisiana’s requirements. Students are registered with the State as Home School participants, and the ACE curriculum is adapted within our learning center to prepare the resident for the GED. The courses needed and length of time it takes to complete the GED requirements are based on the diagnostic testing and transcripts from their last school of attendance. In addition to the ACE curriculum being used to prepare, the residents participate in a specialty course for test preparation.

- College and Career Planning

For those who are preparing for the transition to adulthood upon completion of our program, we provide college and career planning services. We administer the Myers-Briggs Career Test, along with other career coaching resources to assist young women in discerning God’s will for their lives and choosing the career path that fits their calling, talents, and their potential. We recognize that a factor in long-term behavioral change is having clear goals in pursuit of one’s calling.

No matter which tract you choose, our integrated approach is core to our education philosophy. Within the scope of the Teen Challenge Learning Center, we provide the Evangel House™ Life Skills and Emotional Growth curriculum, Bible education, mentorship, therapy groups, physical education, socialization, and off-campus learning activities. We strive to meet the mental, physical, spiritual, and social needs of your daughter in our program. We feel it is crucial to address all of these areas when dealing with those patterns of behavior that led you to consider our program. Please review the Sample Learning Center Schedule to familiarize yourself with what will be your daughter’s daily activities at our center.

Weekly our residents visit The Tally-Ho Riding Academy for English riding lessons. It is located about 10 miles from our campus. Our riding instructor, Ms. BeBe Brown is a native of London, England. She teaches the girls the standards for the United States Pony Clubs (USPC) standards for riding. They are tested on their knowledge and earn credits and privileges with USPC. As our residents gain skills and competency, they are allowed to participate at local and regional competitions. In addition to riding lessons, the residents learn important skills in stabling, grooming, and caring for their horses. They also help Mrs. Brown keep up with care for the many animals on her farm. The weekly lessons provide residents with a skill building activity that is task oriented. Through interaction with the horses, residents gain skills in non-verbal communication, assertiveness, creative thinking, problem solving skills, leadership, taking responsibility, teamwork, relationships, and confidence. The lessons are relaxing, yet challenging, and provide an opportunity to interact with the horses along with many other farm animals the girls assist in the care of.

- Outings

As much as possible, we incorporate outings in our activities. We go as a group on trips to the mall, to Christian concerts, to the Bookstore or to the coffee shop. It depends on what the group wants, and what their interests are. On occasion we go out to eat at a nice restaurant. We catch an occasional football game with the ULL Ragin' Cajun's or a pro-am Hockey game with the local Ice Gators. We are sure to mix it up from time to time. All of our activities are supervised by our home staff.

- Athletics & Team Building

We create an environment of structure, but we also know the importance of fun. Our residents have a daily group building game time at the home. Group activities may include outdoor sports, group games, or sometimes video games. In addition to the structured group activity time, the schedule allows for "down-time" and personal enrichment time as well.


We believe teens need to be taught to make good decisions, and to face natural and logical consequences. This allows them to choose to be a Godly, responsible young adult. It will be our hope that the ability to choose what is right for the right reasons will follow your daughter beyond our program. We see it as our job to create a structure in which your daughter can practice choices, and then face the results of those choices. We attempt to make the program environment a microcosm of real life. We strive to create an environment in which she can succeed or fail, within a safe learning environment. The key is holding your daughter accountable for her actions. For your daughter to learn personal responsibility, she will need to face both positive and negative consequences for choices she makes.

We have created a privilege level system at our center based on sound psychological principles. It incorporates five natural stages of progress that we have identified through our years of experience. We believe this system holds teens accountable, yet allows for freedom of choice when it comes to behavior. The structure of the program keeps those choices within safe limits. The biblical focus serves as a guideline for proper attitudes and behaviors. The spiritual focus of our program encourages residents to develop their own relationship with Christ. The supportive environment we create at our center encourages your daughter to overcome limiting beliefs, controlling problems, and negativity though a series of educational assignments incorporated into each level.

Privilege Levels 1-5 have Levels are a way to set goals and measure progress through the course of the 12 month Evangel House™ program. Levels are not punishment in any way, but privileges are associated with each level. The purpose of the levels system is to encourage each girl to take responsibility for her recovery and behavioral change process. Using levels to measure progress brings clarity to what needs to be worked on, while acknowledging positive accomplishments across the 12 months of the program. We’ve defined five natural stages of progress for the program. Levels 1-5 outline a natural course of progress for girls and corresponding steps for parents. The levels are outlined in both the parent handbook and the student handbook, but are not posted on the website.

Each level has:

A tasks to complete in the academic, therapeutic, social, physical, and spiritual aspects of the program
A series of tasks to complete appropriate to the progress expected.
Readings with reports.
Parent involvement at each level.
The Levels system incorporates a week to week measurement of goals. Staff meets weekly to determine privilege zones for all of the residents, and your daughter’s privilege zone will be in effect for seven days. Zones are not arbitrarily given out. The staff as a team makes the decisions based on the choices we see your daughter make throughout the week. Staff members give encouragement and informal counsel to teach your daughter to make good decisions as opportunities present themselves. The goal is to encourage her to act appropriately, but the choice to change is given to them. It will always be explained to your daughter what the reason for the zone is, and what can be done to improve or correct the situation. We make a special effort to focus on the positive aspects of your daughter’s behavior at our center. Yet as her level is determined, we will hold her accountable to her choices.

Our weekly privilege zones are similar to a traffic light with “Green Zone”, “Yellow Zone”, and “Red Zone” levels. Privileges and consequences fluctuate somewhat to fit the needs of the group, but the general guidelines are as follows:

Green Zone – “Green Zone” is the highest privilege level. Your daughter will be given both consistent rewards and spur of the moment rewards. Examples of consistent rewards are the ability to go outside around the property in free time, full visitation privileges, more telephone time, etc. For the most part, your daughter will know that if she is in “Green Zone”, then she will get a list of privileges. Spur of the moment rewards are those that are given when the opportunity arises. There is no way to know for sure what the reward may be, but special privileges await your daughter in “Green Zone.”

Yellow Zone – “Yellow Zone” is a warning level. It allows your daughter the opportunity to make mistakes without loosing all of her privileges at once. For example, she will still be given privileges, but they will not be full privileges. She will not be allowed to go as freely around the property during free time, her visitation on Saturday will be restricted to supervised on-site visits, and her telephone time will be cut in half. She will be given a chance to make the right decisions about her behavior and correct the problem when she is in this zone.

Red Zone – “Red Zone” is the most serious of consequences. There is usually an important issue being dealt with when on this level. Girls are not allowed to go outside without staff, their telephone time is greatly reduced, visitation is restricted for that week, and packages and mail are held until the crisis is resolved. This zone is a consequence for poor choices, but it also functions as a safety measure. Sometimes, a resident cannot go back to “Green Zone” from this level without first going through “Yellow Zone.” It is normal for girls to end up in this zone as they face difficult issues in their life and use old patterns of dealing with them. You may expect to see her even linger there in an attempt to evoke that pity or rescue response mentioned earlier. Don’t be discouraged if your daughter ends up in Red Zone at our center, as this needs to happen for her to learn. Remember, the purpose is to create a corrective experience from which your daughter will learn new coping and choice making skills. All residents are given opportunities to talk about what went wrong and how to correct the situation.


Our facility is a home, set on twelve acres amid ancient oaks and shored by the Bayou Teche. It is located on a 70 acre sugarcane plantation in historic St. Martinville, Louisiana. Our twelve-acre home-site is surrounded on all four sides by the sugarcane fields. This serene setting provides the perfect setting for residents to work through difficult issues, and at the same time experience a renewed relationship with God. The daily routine is highly structured, yet the setting is home-like and peaceful.

Our home emphasizes community living, with shared responsibilities and duties. Our home is by no means expansive or pretentious, but it is clean, functional, and well maintained. Staff provides twenty-four hour supervision in the home, and are always available for informal counseling in addition to the weekly individual and group therapy sessions the residents receive. We are also always available to parents who may have questions or concerns they wish to discuss.

Family Involvement

The primary focus of our program is family restoration. Our philosophy leads us to include the family as much as possible through the course of the program.
Families attend a family retreat twice per year
Families are encouraged to visit, call, email, and chat weekly
Holiday home visits are arranged if residents and families are ready
Family therapy sessions are held periodically by teleconference, video-conference, and in person when possible.
see the sample parent handbook in the literature section for details

We believe that biblical truths are relevant to today's generation, and they supply us with tools for success. We believe that true and lasting behavioral change comes through an honest and reciprocal relationship with Jesus Christ. Since 1995 it has been our mission to challenge young ladies to be reconciled to God, themselves, their families, and their communities.

We have a fee financing program to allow for any budget.

Christian Professionals who Love God
At our Christian boarding school, we surround your daughter with excellent role models that have a genuine concern for her success. Our staff to student ratio allows for personal attention, with an emphasis on spiritual growth. All of our staff have Bachelor or Master degrees combined with ministry training and experience.
Our Founder & Executive Director
Mark Barrentine, LCSW is a licensed clinical social worker and Christian Psychotherapist. He received his Master of Social Work degree from Tulane University in 1996, and has since counseled in various settings with children, adolescents, adults, and families. He worked with a United Way family-counseling agency in New Orleans from 1995-1997. From 1997-1999 Mr. Barrentine served as Program Therapist and Social Service Director at Cypress Behavioral Health Hospital for the adolescent, adult, chemical dependency, and children’s inpatient units.

In November 1999, Mr. Barrentine was appointed Executive Director of Teen Challenge of Acadiana. Through his tenure there he developed the unique Evangel House therapeutic treatment model which integrates professional Christian counseling with biblical values.

Mr. Barrentine and his wife Karen recently celebrated their 13th wedding anniversary, and they have two children, Emma and Weston. Karen Barrentine has been a Louisiana Certified Teacher for over 10 years. She currently directs the Learning Center for the Program.

Our Home Directors
Leslie Beckman earned two bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and French at Appalachian State University in North Carolina. In addition to her studies, she was a member of the women’s soccer team and Alpha Delta Pi, a philanthropic sorority. She moved to Lafayette in 2001 and began pursuing a Master of Business Administration degree at UL-Lafayette. She worked full-time as an administrative assistant through the duration of her graduate studies. Leslie has 4 years of experience working with youth through summer camp and coaching positions. She has Christian leadership and discipleship training through Intervarsity Christian Fellowship as well as Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship. While at UL, she led a bible study and was actively involved in the international student ministry through Chi Alpha. She joined the Evangel House™ Christian boarding school staff in June of 2004 and serves as director of operations.

Tola Olufade earned her undergraduate degree in Business Administration from the University of Louisiana in 1995. Ms. Olufade moved to the United States from West Africa to pursue her education in 1990. She became involved in the international outreach ministry at the UL Chi Alpha, and was an integral part of the campus ministry there.

After graduating in 1995, Ms. Olufade served as the Resident Hall Coordinator for the University of Louisiana. There she supervised a staff of 35 resident assistants, and she oversaw the residential care of 550 to 2000 young adults. Her work involved emergency management, conflict resolution, academic advising, daily operations supervision, and activity development. She brings her academic experience, her ministry experience, and her love for God to Evangel House™ Christian home and school for girls in a way the greatly benefits our residents.

Our School Staff
Karen Barrentine (Mark's wife as described above) is a Louisiana Certified teacher with over eight years of classroom experience. Mrs. Barrentine coordinates the educational assessments, diagnostic testing, and Individualized Education Plans for each young lady involved with our program. She works to develop a 12 month plan that involves input from parents, residents, and clinicians. Karen also teaches our Evangel House™ Christian boarding school curriculum, which is a biblically based coping skills curriculum. Mrs. Barrentine combines the Teen Challenge curriculum with supplemental readings, activities, and application exercises to create a dynamic and life-changing model for behavioral change and substance abuse recovery. Her classroom experience, combined with ministry experience create a positive atmosphere for our learning center.

Verity DeJean took her Bachelor Degree in English and Literature at Trinity College Carmarthen in Wales. During this time she was a member of the Christian Union and often led Bible Study and Hospitality Catering. She was actively involved in the international exchange program and a volunteer home help for ailing members of the church congregation. She completed her additional studies at Birmingham University, England, and earned a Post Graduate Qualification in Education. She taught high school for three years and worked in the Learning Support Center. She specialized in Advanced Placement college preparation, SAT preparation and Special Educational Needs. She moved to Louisiana with her husband in July of 2004 and joined Evangel House™ Christian boarding school for girls to serve as class teacher in December 2004.

Office Staff
Dana Gates attended Louisiana State University at Eunice for three years majoring in Biology. She has three years of training with the Master’s Commission Program working towards Certification to become a Minister with the Assemblies of God. Ms. Gates currently works part-time as the Evangel House™ admissions coordinator while she is completing her degree in Biology from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

Laura Clark attended Lafayette Master’s Commission for two years where she earned her Certified Ministers License with the Assemblies of God. She then moved to Birmingham, Alabama where she worked as Discipleship Director and Administrative Assistant for Steel City Master’s Commission. She joined Evangel House™ therapeutic boarding school staff in December 2004 bringing her heart for ministry and administrative experience to serve as office manager.

Our Family Retreat Staff
Dr. Lynn and Peggy Aurich
Dr. Lynn is a Christian Clinical Psychologist, licensed in the State of Louisiana. He has over 25 years of experience in neuropsychology, psychodiagnostic testing, and individual and group therapies. Dr. Aurich has a private practice at the Lafayette Psychiatric Group, and he also serves as a ministry advisor to Lafayette First Assembly of God Church, in Lafayette, LA. His wife Peggy is actively involved in ministries at Lafayette First Assembly as well. Dr. Aurich and his wife Peggy invest their experience, wisdom, and ministry skills at our Family Challenge Retreat held in May at Pensacola Beach, Florida. Families benefit greatly from the workshops and interactive presentations Dr. and Mrs. Aurich present there.

Pastor Tommy and Lisa Faulk
Rev. and Mrs. Faulk are senior pastors Lafayette First Assembly of God Church. Pastor and Mrs. Faulk have been involved in family counseling ministries at Lafayette First for over nine years. Pastor Faulk is an Ordained Minister with the Assemblies of God, and has been involved in ministry for over 15 years. Pastor and Mrs. Faulk bring a dynamic perspective to our family retreat, and present workshops on biblical perspectives in family dynamics. They are presenters at our fall family challenge retreat in October. The Faulks have two children, Tommy Jr. and Lehia.

In May and October, the Family Challenge retreat is held

Evangel House

Christian Boarding Schools

337 266-9686

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