Today (7/19), working on the deck of the old middle school was successful. Our group (Janae, Kristina, Calle, Madi, and Leigha) continued to work on the picnic tables and putting boards back down on the deck alongside the other half of our group from Illinois. We got a lot accomplished and we were all super happy. We have three main projects going on at the moment. We have a group of people on putting the deck boards back in, another working on the 4x4s, and the last working on picnic tables. Each of the projects requires drills to complete what is needed to be done. One of our two drills started smoking so we were eventually down to one drill. Instead of being stressed and argumentative towards one another, we were all calm and still happy. We rotated the drill around to the different groups working. Over this, we made a lot of progress despite our desperate need for more drills. We also bonded even more during our lunch. It’s been a great week and I am so thankful to have met the group from Illinois.
Today, Dale and Mel’s crew (Jolie, Nikki, and Grace) continued work on the roof. Our mission was to lay at least 10 tin sheets. We accomplished that and much more. We put down around 15 sheets! The day continued to get hotter, but luckily, we scheduled some group breaks and were able to stop for water and a little taste of peanut butter for an extra boost of energy before going back to work in the hot sun. A cool thing that happened today was a member of the community named Nancy came by and gave us bracelets that say WVstrong. The woman hands these bracelets out to many of the volunteers within the community. One way I saw God today was when we gathered for breaks and lunch with our group. I feel as though we have bonded, and we bonded much better today with our Next Step leader Dee. I am excited to see what the rest of the week brings and to see all of the progress our group makes on the roof! -Nikki
Leigha’s crew (Janae, Madi, Calle, and Kristina) along with a group from Illinois have been working on building a deck. Today we got to start putting together picnic tables which was really fun. We’ve become masters with hammers and nails. Through working together and opening up to each other during lunch devotionals, we’ve grown closer and gotten to know each person of our crew in new ways. We are very thankful that part of our worksite is in the shade! Whenever we get too hot, we can take a step in the shade and instantly feel a little refreshed. I’ve seen God through the new people we’ve met, the open conversations we’ve had, and through our evening worships where we sing, praise, and learn more about God’s love! We’re definitely looking forward to what the rest of this week will bring! – Kristina
Today at my site we worked on a roof. It was me (Grace), Nicole, Jolie, Dale, and Mel. I’m very scared of heights so climbing up a tall ladder was terrifying. I decided to face my fear and go up on the roof. When I did I looked down and started to panic. I was so high up! I tried to participate on the roof but I was too scared and went back down. I then became the ladder buddy. I held the ladder whenever someone went up or down the ladder. It was super hot out and we had no shade on the roof. But everyone still stayed up there and kept working. Finally taking a shower after sweating was a god send. -Grace
I went into today a little scared because I was separated from my friend. Today was honestly way better than I even expected. I worked with Calle, Janae, and Kristina. There were too many people at the site and not many things to do. I sat around a lot because everyone took up the opportunity to do something. It was really hot but I still had a lot of fun singing to all the throwback songs and being able to eat food and have air conditioning during lunch. I really hope tomorrow is going to have more things to do so I can get physical and not feel useless. I’m glad that I have the group I have and am able to do this work this week. -Madi
After two long days of driving (15 hours which felt like 20), we made it to West Virginia ready to serve and eager to see God’s work working within us and the community of Clendenin.
Yesterday brought us through Chicago for some deep dish pizza and to explore the city (which did not happen… yet). Well, the deep dish took a little longer than anticipated so we decided to do some team building at an escape room and are saving the city for the journey back. WE ALMOST ESCAPED (only 25% escape the room we were in), but to be fair we had the hardest room and none of us had EVER done an escape room. Then we continued on to Indianapolis for a good nights rest. Which was much needed after a long days drive.
Onto Sunday, we joined the great people at Ressurection Lutheran church in Indianapolis for worship – Beautiful church, if you ever go through and get a chance, stop – they were a great host church! Our journey then took us to West Virgina, with a few stops for food and gas but we made it and are tired but excited! Thank you, everyone, who has been praying for us and those who donated. Follow the journey through this blog each day!