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Bob, Elena, Caleigh, Branson, Tyler, Choo
Today’s journey for Team Bob brought us to Leslie county. We ventured out following our carpenter Nick after picking up supplies. Unfortunately, we hit road construction which completely closed the road for 1.5 hrs! After turning around (not as easy as it sounds but skillfully handled by Bob) It took us 2 hours to reach our destination! Again, we had the opportunity to meet the homeowner who was legally blind and so very grateful for our helping hands. We were ready to get to work! Little did we know we would be spending hours UNDER a house, technically a trailer. Our task was getting vinyl skirting off the base of the trailer. A strong suggestion for groups who are looking for a team building exercise!
Your children are amazing!
Bryan, Hannah, Joy, Skylar, Jaden
Like a well oiled machine, our team worked on laying down many sheets of sub-floor today. We may be in the mountains, but it’s hot. With plenty of breaks for water and cooling down in the shade, we were able to spend more quality time with the future homeowners and love on a few animals. Once again, we worked alongside the entire family that will one day live in the house and seeing the pride they have in building their own house has been wonderful. Tomorrow, we start seeing walls go up! You have every reason to be proud of your teenagers!
Please continue to keep us in your thoughts this week as we face more high temperatures, high humidity, and possible weather delays in our work.
Pictures coming tomorrow!
Love and blessings to you all!
The Adventure Begins
Thank you for your blessings as we departed Raleigh for Hazard on Sunday. We had an uneventful ride through the Piedmont and into the mountains as we settled into a familiar comfort with one another. We were welcomed to Hazard by Janie and Emma, who work for the Housing Development Alliance. After a brief orientation, we were introduced to another group who had been here for a couple of days and welcomed us in with leftovers from their fabulous dinner. In conversation, we found out one of their group leaders was a former Pullenite! Don’t worry, he only left because of his job. Weary, road heavy heads were not enough to bring an early bedtime as the excitement bubbled. We finally settled into our air mattresses, cots, and various other sleeping arrangements later than some of us would have chosen but at least we slept well.
Monday began much too early, given the previous sentence, but the day quickly brightened as caffeine and sugar kicked in for us all. After meeting our pro’s, myself (Bryan), Hannah, Joy, Jaden, and Skylar all took off to work on framing the house of a young family of 8. When we arrived, the foundation was set in place and we have been given the task to frame the house, beginning with the floor and headed upward. The first day is always difficult as people get comfortable with one another and with a set of tools and a whole new language but the team worked really well together, even in the heat, humidity, and occasional shower. Hannah used tools for the first time in her life, Joy and Skylar found their niche with an impact wrench, and Jaden seemed eager to try anything we would let him do. I just tried not scare anyone away from the job-site. We have the rare privilege, when framing a home, to have the father be one of our carpenters and five of the six children all came out and helped with the “house raising”. It was truly a joy to see and I think our teenagers will gain much from the week.
Bob, Elena, Caleigh, Branson, Tyler, and Choo all went to finish up some work done at two other sites where remodeling was taking place. They were able to do some roof work, replace some decking, and do some painting; all in one day! They had the chance to meet, talk, and share some good stories with one family, with grandma even bringing out her quilt, that she quilted, to show everyone. It was gorgeous and so was grandma. Tyler and Branson got to enjoy some time playing with goats and the various other animals throughout the day added some much needed respite from the heat. Elena and Choo researched how to hammer a nail and have now deemed themselves professionals while Caleigh seems to easily adjust to various tasks and do them well. Bob remains a solid leader and source of knowledge. Tomorrow, they will embark on a new journey, at a new home, to love and serve Perry County.
Things to keep in mind as we continue our week:
-It’s hot and that takes it’s toll on people not accustomed to working outside.
-They are calling for rain everyday. We can work around some showers but if storms pass through, we will have to shut down work for the day.
-As we grow more tired, we will be less willing to interact with new people and work as hard as we have.
-Emotionally, there is much to be processed here this week.
-We do miss our families
Pullen Memorial Baptist Church has a long, exemplary record of action on social justice issues. Some of our members would like to strengthen our call to action on the care of Creation by organizing an environmental justice coalition within the church that will advocate for climate action and other needed protections from the faith perspective.
We believe scriptural arguments presented in tandem with those from a scientific perspective are essentially uncontestable. It is our view that the fate of this planet may rest in the hands of members of biblically inspired religious communities like Pullen.
The willful deniers of climate change in the energy sector, for example, are unlikely to challenge a teaching of Jesus or a verse in Deuteronomy. They can repeatedly question the science and the magnitude of human influence, but they are not likely to debate Scripture.
We believe the faith community can push companies and politicians to respond to the reality of climate change and acknowledge the imminent threats it poses to America and the world. The voice of the faith community would join the voices of many other groups that are making progress in persuading politicians and business leaders to press for action. Our problem is time: we need to greatly accelerate the pace at which progress is being made, or face destructive, irreversible changes to our world.
Do you feel called to join us? Is environmental protection something you are passionate about? Come to an initial exploratory meeting where we ask the question; “How can we, as a congregation, be a force for environmental justice and preservation, to elevate the climate change issue within the congregation, and persuade legislators to tackle ameliorating measures.”
We believe a group of people with a set intention can create viable actions that produce change!
Please email Karen Delahunty at: Karen.firstname.lastname@example.org
Please include a list of the best days/times for you to meet….
Peter Millsaps and the Episcopal Farm Worker Ministry
The Farm Labor Organizing Committee is holding worker meetings, but since none of the farm workers have cars, worker participation is completely dependent on transportation by volunteers.
Driving Workers to their Meetings
FLOC’s farm worker members in the three regions of NC (Eastern, Piedmont and Western) need rides to their scheduled regional meetings (see dates below) in July and August. By driving 1-4 farm workers to a meeting, you can make a huge difference in the success of the organization these farm workers are building. At each FLOC regional meeting attendance may be 40 – 60 workers …..so we need 15 – 20 volunteers for each meeting.Triangle Friends of Farmworkers (TFF) and the National Farm Worker Ministry (NFWM) have collaborated in past years in recruiting and coordinating rides for farm workers — this year we need more volunteer drivers.
You do not need to speak Spanish. Before your return trip, you and FLOC farm worker members and staff will have a chance to eat a meal together.
July 2nd FLOC Regional membership mtg (Eastern – Dudley, NC, at FLOC’s union hall)
July 30th FLOC Regional membership mtg (Piedmont – Town and meeting venue TBD)
August 20th FLOC Regional membership mtg (Western — Town and meeting venue TBD)
Sept 7th Farmworker delegates to FLOC convention driven to rendezvous points (TBD) to board buses
Sept 10th Farmworker delegates returning from Toledo to be picked up and taken to labor camps
How to Volunteer
(1) To volunteer for a specific date(s), just let us know (email Dave Austin at email@example.com ) and we’ll put you on our list and send you updates on schedules as soon as we get them;
(2) If you would like to volunteer, but can’t commit to any specific dates yet, let us know (Dave Austin at firstname.lastname@example.org) and we’ll put you on our potential drivers list and send you updates and reminders as we receive them.
(3) If you have any questions, please email and we’ll do our best to answer them or get an answer for you.
A few words you might enjoy from Pullenite Deborah Brogden:
I enjoyed the Islamic Center’s visiting day so much, I just wanted to submit a little write-up about it for those who could not be there.
During our first Wednesday evening gathering this March, Cathy Tamsburg passed on an invitation to attend the Islamic Center’s day of community outreach for education and fellowship. This event was held last Saturday, March 4. Fortunately, I was able to attend. While I did pre-register for the day, I saw that all were welcome, pre-registered or not. I wandered around the large gym which was lined with display tables. The tables had posters and pamphlets about the history and points of belief for Islam. At one table was a gentleman who, with great finesse, would write out one’s name in Arabic calligraphy.
The best part of the occasion was meeting and talking to the young ladies of the mosque who circulated, greeted and assisted the visitors. These women helped to serve the snacks, the tea and coffee, and the lunch. They answered questions about the building (Where are the bathrooms? Why do they include foot-washing areas?) and, of course, answered various questions about their faith. I found these young folks to be so welcoming and helpful. The day, starting with the warm welcome, included lots of good conversation, good food, and learning opportunities. I’m glad I was a part of it.