Showing posts from June, 2009

Things I learned last week

Last week there were a total of 106 people working with the mission--50 with another organization but they completed some of our projects in Sparks and Horizon City, 18 staying in Anapra and building 2 houses in Anapra, and 38 in the dorms working under Chris, Kristine, and I. We were all a little nuts by the end of the week, but the progress we made on 2 houses in Horizon City with all those hands was INCREDIBLE. One house that a group framed and sided a couple weeks ago got a new roof, insulation, ALL of its interior drywall, windows, and a door; another on the same street that started with cement block walls and rafters got the roof done, inside walls framed, wiring run, and a bunch of drywall hung too. Like 7 or 8 people came up to us while we were working too, asking how they could apply for our services. It's a blessing because it wasn't that long ago that we were on our hands and knees begging for projects, but it's beginning to feel a little bit like this one time w

Like mother, like daughter

As promised, pictures of the last week, building Mariela's house with a group of youth from Roseville, MN (by the way they were AWESOME kids and I miss them already...I think the thing that impressed me most is that they all volunteered to pray before meals and such instead of giving their leader a bunch of blank stares): Chris's "flat slab" happy dance--Mariela's husband and father poured it, and it was a thing of beauty! The view from the roof, which is where I hung out basically all week. The most precise rows of roofing discs I have ever seen in my life. You think that's bad? Immediately after this picture was taken, Chris told them all that I was sad and needed a hug. I proceeded to climb down and return the favor. Then when we were done and everyone was climbing down, Chris accidentally touched someone's leg with a roller as they were being passed down. Let the tar wars begin! These girls were COVERED from head to toe...some of them still had tar on

It's a God thing

Just wanted to write a quick little something and share my excitement about the family that I have been building a house in Anapra for all week. I found out on Sunday that it is actually for Mariela, the daughter of a woman whose house my group built a few years back. She was 14 and still living under her mom's roof then; now she is 17, married, has a 1 1/2 yr. old son, and is expecting their second child in August. How cool is that?!? We're going to finish today--all that's left tarring and mudding--so look for pictures soon!

The only thing better than roofing...

Image 2nd story roofing! 16 feet off the ground! This past week Chris's mom Carol brought a group from CO, and we worked on building a 2nd story addition for Nelson, Lupe's son. Lupe was the construction manager for Santisima who passed away suddenly on June 10, 2008, while the CO group was here last year. His death is a big part of the reason why Chris is here. Even though I never knew him, he was obviously near and dear to the group, and it was neat to be able to honor his memory by serving his wonderful family. Lupe's wife's name is Xochitl, and they have 2 daughters, Karlita, 4, and Lizbeth, almost 10. Obviously my favorite part was the roof, but here are some pics from the rest of the week too: The group singing "Amazing Grace" after the service at Santisima on Sunday. We all stayed afterwards for the benefit dinner held for Josefina, Lupe's widow. She actually did the cooking because it was a surprise--she thought all the $$$ was going to the church-

Help and Hope to the People of Juarez, Mexico

Join our Cause on facebook! I NEVER put stuff like that on my profile page but I figured this was worthwhile ;) Here's part of the e-mail I got from Stephen that told me about it: "Hi Y'all! I just created a "Cause" page on facebook to rally people to help us help the suffering in Juarez. You should have received an invitation on your facebook page to join. Check it out. Join me. Help me recruit people to join the cause. Also to put my money where my mouth is, Krysia and I have pledged to match the first $500 of donations if people give that much by June 15th through the Facebook "Cause" page. The $$$ will help feed the hungry in Juarez. I've personally met and talked to people in Juarez struggling for food. It's real. It breaks my heart and I want us to be able to do more. Fortunately hundreds of children are being fed every Wednesday in Anapra through a new hot meal program we've taken on there. Also food baskets are being give

Better advertising?

That was the title of an e-mail Krysia sent me awhile back in hopes of coming up with a better way to publicize Vacation Bible Schools and other activities at the Sparks Community Center. Granted, the first ever VBS was just held in March, but we have had a few disappointing turnouts, and I don't think putting a stack of the same flyer with the dates and times changed is going to cut it all summer. So, inspired by the group from Barrington, IL, that usually does a VBS at Santisima with hundreds of kids, I came up with the idea of making big, reusable signs that could be set up on the side of the road. We cut sheets of OSB in half and then attached them to 2 x 4's with a hinge at the top so they'll stand (Chris's idea...Kristine helped out a bunch with the painting too). We even put chains on the sides so they won't fall over. One says "ESCUELITA BIBLICA" (VBS) and one says "ACTIVIDADES GRATIS!" (Free Activities!), so that we can still use it when