Sunday, August 18, 2013

Saturday Minot News

Our last evening together was spent sharing thoughts sitting outside in the hotel courtyard.  Roger presented Noah a toolbox with some tools and a Hope Village hat, and a Hope Village hat and t-shirt to Rick.  A small thank-you for teaming with SAKLC on this servant trip.

Saturday brought an early-morning call for several folks at the airport - Pastor Mark, Jane and Fred.  Ray picks up a rental car at the airport too.  Rick and Noah start their drive back to Colorado.  Roger leaves on his motorcycle for a 500 mile day towards Chicago.  Steve and Lynn are continuing on their National Park exploration heading west.

In the morning newspaper is a great article about the ELCA Mission Builders team that is working at Christ Lutheran Church. 

And on the Hope Village web page is a newsy article about the SAKLC team based on a stop at the church to see the work that was going on there.

Ray, Ann, Steve and Lynn also attended the Saturday 5:00 pm service at Christ Lutheran Church.  The ELCA Mission Builders Becky and Bill presented an update to the congregation on the progress this past week.  A few tidbits of information:  over 500 hours were worked at the church by contractors, ELCA Mission Builders, Congregation Members and the SAKLC volunteers (217 hours).  The most work in one week!  In addition, the new storage room built by Ann, Fred and Roger and painted by Jane with help from Lynn and Noah was filled up by church volunteers on Saturday.  The church members were thrilled with being able to store so much and still have space left.  Most of the items in the room belong in other places in the church like the kitchen and office.  Until those areas are completed the storage room is great.  Thanks again, SAKLC servants.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Final Post for Minot Servant Trip

"God's servants, working together" - I Corinthians 3:9
God's work.  Our hands.
When the work was done, and the time and talent of the team were used for God's work, Pastor Dave Maxfield closed our day.  He asked everyone to come into the sanctuary and on to the new altar area to stand together in a circle.  Pastor Dave prayed for all of us to have a safe journey as we return home, expressed the church's gratitude and thanked the Lord for all the blessings of the week.  Then the Lord prayer's and a loud REJOICE!! 

Roger, Ray, Mark, Ann, Lynn, Steve, Jane, Fred, Rick & Noah
Pastor Mark will be talking on Sunday briefly about the trip.  In the fall when everyone is back in Florida, more stories will be shared as the plans form for the next Servant trip.  Why not come along?

Friday August 16 2013

Mark & Steve drywalling
Noah and Jane at the dumpster
Mark, Roger, Fred drywalling
Can this really be the last day of the Servant Trip to Minot?!  Everyone is up early for breakfast and departs to arrive for prayer before work starts at 7:30.  The Mission Builders are already there and getting the work areas set up.   The SAKLC teams knows what they are to do today....finish the storage room shelving, get as much drywall up as possible, and clean-up the work areas.  The work starts and before you know it, it is break and devotion time 9:45 a.m.  Lynn even gets to ring the bell to announce break.

Break Time (Ray & Ann working)
The devotional word for today is Faith.  This word has meaning for each of us individually as we reflect during Bill's devotional talk.  Yes, SAKLC Servants did have faith that their talents would be able to help Minot in the rebuilding and especially at Christ Lutheran Church. 

At the end of today's devotion, Chris (on violin) and Gloria on Piano) play Beethoven's "Ode to Joy" for Steve and Carole - Mission Builders - for their Wedding Anniversary today.

Steve & Carole - Happy Anniversary

The week went by quickly and we met so many different people.  Their stories are the real story and so many could be told.  People in Minot have experienced their community hurting, healing and now rebuilding.  The recovery will continue after we leave.  The ELCA Mission Builders, alongside members of the congregation, will continue to the rebuild the flooded church.  And the work will continue at the house where Ray, Mark and Steve installed ceiling drywall.  FEMA is coming to pick-up their trailer the end of September.  There will be people still not in their homes who will need to find housing even if their home isn't complete. 
A tradition of the Mission Builders is to write a personal message on the plywood or drywall before the final drywall goes up in churches that they build.  The SAKLC team completed this week -- painted two storage rooms and completely shelved one; built a dropped ceiling in a long hallway; drywalled two classrooms and framed and drywalled a portion of another classroom; partially drywalled a hallway; built the framing for three walls; clean-up mortar and brick and just clean-up.  The Mission Builders asked us to write a message of our own.  Here are the messages we left. 

Roger's Message

Lynn leaves this message

Ann, Fred, Roger's message

Noah's ceiling

Rick & Noah R15's from Winter Park

Jane's Message

Steve's message

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Thursday, August 15

Up at the crack of dawn among the pick-up trucks, time to head to our servant work at Christ Lutheran Church.  Hard to believe it is the fourth day and we will finish our servant work tomorrow.  Everyone will be working at the church today.

Ann, Fred and Roger continue working on the storage room putting up the shelves. 
Pastor Mark, Steve and Ray work on putting up drywall all day.  Rick and Noah helped because they finished the hallway drop ceiling framing today (incredible!).
Jane and Lynn spend the day moving items - Christmas items to the storage closet painted on Monday, electrical leftovers outside for scrap pick-up, brick and mortar from a wall that is being knocked out for windows to the dumpster.
Linley from Hope Village stopped by to talk to us and take some pictures.  Mary Carlson of Lutheran Disaster Response who just had knee surgery two weeks ago, stopped by to greet us and thank us for coming to serve in Minot.  Verla, Church Council President, stopped by to bid us farewell and thank us again, as did Allan Pearson.  Ray, Roger and Lynn presented each with a SAKLC Servant Team T-shirt.

 Mission Builders keep us going with guidance and the daily morning devotions with hymns.  Today's word of the day is healing.  It is truly an experience to be in a flood recovery area and to see the healing going on in this community. 

At the end of this day, the Mission Builders and the Church have a pizza dinner for us.  We sit outside and enjoy the perfect evening air and wonderful Christian company. 
Mission Builders & Assoc Pastor Carol

Pastor Mike & Roger
At the end of the day, it is still hard to believe this servant week will be over tomorrow.  We will be at Christ Lutheran Church working from 7:30 am to 1:00 pm when everyone quits because there is a funeral service.  Then everyone will go back to the hotel, pack and relax and then there will be our final devotions before going out for a team dinner at a local restaurant.  Tomorrow some reflections about the trip before we sign off on this amazing experience.


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Wednesday Night Hope Village

Showers were in order for everyone after the day working and now to Hope Village for dinner.  As we pull into the parking lot, Steve, Ray and Mark see the people they were working with at the flooded home, Rhonda & John Johnson from Idaho.

Team w/sign
Flood Home Team
The last night at Hope Village, many of the teams put up a sign that notes they were here working.  We are no different.  Group shot and one of Jane and Steve putting up the sign.  Then one of Linley (grad of Florida State) who is the public relations person for Hope Village.

Jane & Steve
Linley of Hope Village

Smiling Jenny who prepares meals
The Methodist relief workers have arrived this evening so we eat and share a meal in the blue and white tent.  Jenny is a great cook who prepares all the meals.  Thank you, Jenny!

Pastor Dave & Pastor Mark

Pastor Dave of Our Savior Lutheran Church where Hope Village is located meets Pastor Mark.

Playing their Violins
The Danielson Family
After dinner we enjoy a violin concert by the Danielson family from Ft. Wayne, Indiana.  They are visiting their family in Minot and volunteered to play for the those at Hope Village.  It was a lovely way to end our time at Hope Village and so representative of the kindness of the people we've met on this trip.
Back at the hotel, a group gathers outside to enjoy the fresh air and recap of the day's experiences.  Another day of meeting people, working and learning how God works in so many ways in people's lives, including ours.

Wednesday, August 14

Last night, Ray, Fred and Jane met with Stephen Ministers of Christ Lutheran Church.  Several cards from SAKLC members and the prayer shawls were given to be shared with congregation members in need.

In the morning, our teams are split in to two again.  Ray, Steve and Pastor Mark return to work on the flood home while everyone else leaves early to go to the Christ Lutheran Church.

Every morning when we arrive, we sign in to the volunteer book

and then Bill Graves of Mission Builders leads us in prayer.  The ELCA Mission Builders, as mentioned earlier, are leading the project at Christ Lutheran and Bill directs us everyday in what our work projects will be for the day. 
Five members of the team are working on building shelving for a storage room.  Rick and Noah are teaming on hanging drywall and building a ceiling in a hallway.  So this is where we all start today.

Our devotions as provided by Becky of Mission Builders focuses on the word "blessing" today.  Our hymn of the day is "We Are Called."  After the morning break, the Mission Builders gather for a picture. These are amazing, hard-working people who come from all over the country to build or in this case re-build churches.  They live in their own trailers from June - October.
On the ELCA website it says, "....while their hands provide housing for ministries, their hearts and voices share their faith and build up the body of Christ."  We are so thankful to be working alongside these people at Christ Lutheran Church.

Trailers where they live
Couples from the left:  Bob & Chris Risbery from Georgia
Mission Builders Team
Bob & Fern Neff from Texas
Bill & Becky Graves from Indiana
Steve & Carole Schenk from Maryland
Les & Jeanne Sitz from Texas


Pastor Maxfield in the sanctuary
The shelf builders
Miles a member for 30+ years
Pastor David Maxfield comes by today and we are able to speak with him about the excitement building for the growth of this church.  Nearly 40% of the church members were affected by the flood waters.  Many are still in the rebuilding phase themselves.  Having some parts of the church usable again will be a great relief because he knows God has a plan for this church within this growing community.   Another member, Miles, tells us how thankful he is for our volunteering to help them rebuilding their church.  By quitting time, the storage closet shelves are almost done on one wall.  A project that we hope to complete before we leave on Friday.  It is hard to believe we have already been working for three days.  Dinner tonight will be at Hope Village and there is some entertainment planned after our meal.  This will be our last night at Hope Village because Christ Lutheran Church will be having a pizza dinner tomorrow night.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Tuesday, August 13

Truck arrives for moving containers to Oklahoma
Today our team is splitting in to two teams.  Ray, Steve and Pastor Mark will go to a house that was flooded and needs drywall hung.  They have to go to Hope Village by 8:00 a.m. and pickup directions and tools to the work site.  Everyone else will go back to Christ Lutheran Church and need to be there by 7:15 a.m.  Today, there is a funeral at the church so work will stop at the break/devotion time until 1:00 p.m.  Reminds us that the life in the church goes on no matter if the church is under construction.

In the morning, Roger, Fred, Rick and Noah prepare sheet rock for drywall work.  There is a lot of drywall that needs to be done.  Lynn, Ann and Jane do some more painting and move boxes to clear an area that the Mission Builders have plans to start working on next.  Then, work stops at 9:30 to help move the chairs into the sanctuary for the funeral service.  Ann and Jane run the vacuum to clear some dust.  Devotions and snack break are held outside.  Hymns are played with accompaniment by a member of the church on the keyboard and Chris from Mission Builders on the violin.  The devotional word of the day is compassion. The weather is absolutely perfect outside this morning.  Being outside let's the church set-up for the funeral and respectfully when we are done with our devotions, clear the table, chairs and food to be able to have some free time.

I'm Coming Back!
Ceiling workers
Meanwhile, Ray, Steve and Mark are at the Johnson's house along with others sent there by Hope Village.  The learn the house had 10 feet of water inside from the flood.  The owner has put a sign in the front yard.   Their project is to hang a ceiling of drywall.
Steve & Ray

Mark working

Lots of work

The Christ Lutheran Church team is now on a break until 1:00 pm.  With this time, we take advantage of a taking Roger to drop his motorcycle off at the Honda dealer for tires.  Then, the group takes a quick tour of the Scandinavian Heritage Park in downtown Minot.  The largest percentage of Norwegian descendants per state population reside in the Minot area.  In celebration, a park was established and houses a windmill, a Stave Church modeled after one in Norway, a Stabbur (house with grass growing on top), a log house and a Dala Horse.  It is a very interesting park and a nice break in the beautiful weather.
After the visit to the park, the group heads for lunch to the Community Soup Kitchen called Katie's Kitchen.  Six churches in Minot have organized a lunch meal seven days and week and dinner on Wednesday and Sundays for anyone in the community who has a need for a meal.  Today's meal is held at Bread of Life Lutheran Church but it is actually Christ Lutheran Church's day to serve.  With their church under re-construction, Bread of Life offers their facilities.  This community knows how to team.  We are greeted by the Pastor of Bread of Life for a prayer before our meal.  Once again the hospitality of this church and community is amazing.  Our meal is filling and the compassion shown for those in need in the community by a church community still suffering from their own struggle to recovery is very moving.  Thank you to the women of Christ Lutheran Church!
Women of Christ Lutheran
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Back to work at the church after lunch.  The teams start their afternoon's tasks.  More drywalling, building shelves and more painting.  The team at the house are continuing their work.  And everyone quits working at 4:45 p.m. to clean up their work areas and then head back to the hotel for dinner.  Pictures below show the team at work.  

Fred with Bill Graves

Ann & Roger building shelves

Lynn painting

Tonight, Ray, Jane and Fred are meeting with the Stephen Ministers of Christ Lutheran Church in fellowship.  Three prayer shawls from SAKLC are being given to the Stephen Ministers to give to those who are need of healing and prayer.

Thank you to all at SAKLC who made the prayer shawls.  Also, thank you to all at SAKLC who sent cards with Pastor Mark.  He shared these with us on Sunday night and we will be handing them out to people in Minot to let them know SAKLC cares.  What a blessing!