First Sunday in Lumberton

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Chestnut Street UMCToday was Sunday so we got to go to church at a new church to us. The team went to Chestnut Street UMC in downtown Lumberton. We all were really impressed with the friendliness and welcoming of the congregation. Chestnut Street is the sponsoring agency for NOMADS so the congregation knew about NOMADS and what we were are doing in town. Many of them thanked us for what we are doing in their community. The pastor is Rev Herbert Lowry who was also very welcoming and presented a wonderful sermon on baptism. We really appreciate the church’s support and encouragement. It was a joy to worship with them today.

After worship we decided to have lunch at Pier 41 Seafood which is a locally, family owned restaurant in Lumberton. It was very good! Would definitely eat there again. We had various entrees such as seafood gumbo, oyster stew, fried shrimp and fried oysters. We are not eating much supper tonight. We spent the afternoon reorganizing the truck and loading the back with tools and painting supplies to be ready for work tomorrow. Then at 6:00 we hosted the team in Fred 2 for our weekly team meeting. Since five of us are new this week we had a time to get acquainted and then Mike, our leader this week, brought us up to speed on the work we will be doing. We currently have two houses assigned to us. The first we will not be returning to until the plumber sets some fixtures then we will install the laminate flooring and that home will be complete. The second one we still have probably two more weeks work. There is painting, trim work to be installed and laminate flooring to install and other miscellaneous tasks to be done. This is going to be another good and fun team. We look forward to a safe and productive week.

Travel to NC

Saturday, June 24, 2017

After all the rain earlier in the week, today was a beautiful sunny day. As a matter of fact it was just plain hot and humid. This morning we had a wonderful (Constructors size) breakfast with Randy and Debra and then pulled out mid-morning in route for Lumberton, NC, leaving behind the wonderful 50 amp RV outlet Randy had installed for us. We will certainly enjoy using that on future visits. It took a long time to make the drive. There were four wrecks on I-20 with long traffic delays and then there was another delay due to what appeared to be a felony stop that closed one lane. There were 5 police cars on the scene when we passed a U-Haul truck and someone was in handcuffs.

Parking at Lumberton
This week’s team is two Airstream trailers and two Tiffin motorhomes

We were glad to finally pull into the Robeson County Fairgrounds and be greeted by our team leader for the next week. We will be in the Lumberton area for four weeks (leading the last three) working on a Disaster Rebuild project to assist in recovery from Hurricane Matthew. We understand that the area around Lumberton suffered extensive flooding from the storm. When Matthew made landfall in NC it was “only” a Category 1 storm but it was the massive amounts of rain that caused so much devastation. Many homes in Lumberton were over 4 feet under water. We met our other team members this afternoon and then went to Walmart to pick up a few things. A severe thunderstorm came through about the time we got into the store. The rain poured down. The power went off in the store momentarily and was off in the campground when we returned. Fortunately we have 6 large batteries in our new Fred so we really didn’t notice the outage except our air conditioners we not on when we returned. We didn’t really miss the air conditioning because the temperature had dropped over 15 degrees from when we left for Walmart. Power is back on now and everything is back to normal We are looking forward to a productive time here in Lumberton.

By the way, if you are on Facebook and would like to track the progress in the coming weeks of the Rosalie Baptist Church project. Go to Facebook and search for “Constructors for Christ“. You will find many more pictures and videos of the construction and volunteers.

Travel to SC

Friday, June 23, 2017

Every time we woke up during the night it was raining. Fortunately, it stopped about the time we got up today and we were able to get ready to leave without getting wet. We pulled out of Bellefonte RV Park about 8:00 am and headed toward Chattanooga, then Atlanta and on to Randy and Debra’s in Johnston, SC. We will spend the night here and then go on the Lumberton, NC tomorrow. The drive was about 350 miles and took longer than planned, but when ever you go through Atlanta you never know how long it will take. Traffic was heavy. About 30 miles west of Augusta Google Maps and Waze indicated the Interstate had a 35 minute delay so we exited and took surface roads for a while then got back on I-20 in time to cross over into South Carolina. We stopped for fuel at the Pilot station at exit 11 then on to Johnston. It was a nice drive except for the traffic and we had no rain. Debra prepared a great supper for us and Dave and Jennifer also joined us for dinner. It was great to see them again even if it was a short visit.

While we were driving to SC our Constructors team continued to work on Rosalie Baptist Church. They installed most of the remaining trusses and put up and taped most of the sheathing. We understand they had to stop due excessive winds. Sorry we couldn’t be there to help but we need to be in Lumberton tomorrow and get settled in to be ready to start our Disaster Rebuild Project. Hope you all are safe and dry.

Last Day at Rosalie

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Rain delayWeather-wise today was about the same as it was all over the southeast. Rain, rain and more rain. And then some more. Fortunately we did not have any of the storms/tornadoes that places like Fairfield, AL experienced. The people working on the sanctuary tried to get started this morning but it was just too much rain.

One truss up
One more truss up

There was one truss put up but then it was decided it really wasn’t safe and all work was halted. After we had breakfast everyone waited a while and then a few tried to get out there again but again it was just too wet and work was called for the rest of the day. We had told them to call us if they decided to return to work this afternoon. About 1:30 pm we received a call from our kitchen team leader saying it was all over for this week and we were not going to cook tonight. We had planned spaghetti. We all came back to the RV’s and took nice long naps. We were all more tired than we realized because we all slept and rested all afternoon – while it continued to rain. Evidently the rain ended at Rosalie and some of the folks went back to work. We are about 30 minutes from the job site at the RV park and it was still raining here. Tonight since we weren’t doing spaghetti David and Cecelia went back to Mud Creek with us. It was just as good tonight as it was Sunday. Some of the best catfish ever! After we returned from dinner we Randy received another call saying some of the team is going to work tomorrow and try to get the rest of the trusses up. Unfortunately, we just can’t stay tomorrow. We need to be in Lumberton, NC Saturday afternoon and will go to Randy and Debra’s house tomorrow and then on to Lumberton Saturday. Maybe next year we won’t schedule anything the week after Constructors so we can stay later. Hope they have good weather tomorrow and accomplish a lot. It will be great to follow the pictures of the next for weeks teams as they work to complete what we began. Once again this year it has been a great Constructor’s project. David and Cecelia have enjoyed it as well and say they plan to return next year. We all are looking forward to the next year’s church where every that may be.

Trusses!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

What another wonderful day this was. It of course started again at 4:30 when all of us had to get up and head up the mountain to Rosalie at 5:30. Debra, Anne and Cecelia had breakfast duty today so we started work at 6:00 just like the folks working on the building. Breakfast is at 7:30. It takes a while to cook 60 biscuits, sausage, bacon, eggs, slice watermelon, tomatoes and cantaloupe, make gravy, grits, and chocolate biscuits. Of course there is also juices, milk, coffee, and dry cereal options as well.

Out on the job site, there was big, big work going on. Right after breakfast the big crane swung the first truss into place. It took to until 4:30 to get all but one of the trusses for the sanctuary into place. There was one short truss missing and it will arrive special order in the morning so the sanctuary will be complete. Then they will start on the trusses for the fellowship hall and Sunday School rooms. The fire blocks were also completed today. Also finished was roughing in all the windows and installation of the top plates.

 

Aerial view on Wednesday evening
Aerial view on Wednesday evening

It’s a tradition at Constructors projects that we all sign some of the boards that are going to be covered with drywall. Generally we write a favorite scripture and sign our names. We started that today and even one of the guys hanging the trusses did that way up high above the sanctuary.

 

This construction project is having a big impact on this little community. People from other churches have been coming and asking what they can to do help (not that unusual), but yesterday and today we also had people who not involved with any churches come by to help. We also have people in cars parking across the street and just sitting there watching us work for hours. The preacher talked Sunday about us being examples to the community and being willing to tell them why were are here. We haven’t experienced this in previous years with Constructors but the preacher was right, the community is watching.

Tonight was our annual “talent” show. It’s a time when we have some fun with roasting a few members of the team, enjoy the musical talents of others and have a testimony from one of the team members. We then ended the night with a Rosalie tradition of opening the doors, lifting our hands and shouting “Praise the Lord” loudly three times.

 

Fog & Sunset

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Foggy start
Foggy start to the work day

It was another early morning with Randy, Max and David leaving the RV park at 5:30 heading up the mountain to Rosalie. Debra, Anne and Cecelia followed at 7:00. We all drove in fog. It was clear in the valley but on top of the mountain it was quite foggy but pretty. Out on the slab today they finished framing the interior walls, placed most of the top plates and installed most of the window and door headers. Again today we had great food and too much of it. The cooking team that Anne, Debra and Cecelia are on prepared lunch today and as is customary for lunch there were sandwiches, chips, salads, fruits and various desserts. After lunch the fire stop placement was begun as well as the truing of the walls and bracing in preparation for truss placement tomorrow. When the work day ended at 6:00pm we had a wonderful meal of roast beef, mashed potatoes and gravy, peas, green beans, salad, rolls, fruit and peach cobbler with homemade ice cream. It was delicious.

 

Channel 48 News came out to Rosalie just before lunch today and there was a nice story on our project on the evening news tonight even though to begin with they had our name incorrect. (Click here to view the segment.) Constructors is a wonderful group of Christians who are being the hands and feet of Christ. It’s also really neat to follow the churches and communities where we have worked in past summers and see what God is doing thru the churches we have helped.

Sunset at the RV park
Glorious sunset at the RV park

After dinner we drove back down the mountain to the RV park by a different route that took us through Flat Rock, Free Hill, Hog Jowl Gap, Crow Town, Roaches Cove, Mud Creek and back to Hollywood. Interesting and pretty drive. Of course when you are as tired as we are this evening you tend to get a little silly and we had a great and almost continuous laugh as we drove home thanks to all the strange names. Our favorite was probably Roaches Cove – NOT! Back at the rig we were treated to an absolutely gorgeous sunset. One of the prettiest ever! God’s beautiful world – Thank you God!

WOW!!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Today was an amazing day. Max, Randy and David left for work at 5:30 this morning. We forgot to mention earlier that David and Cecelia, friends of Randy and Debra from North Augusta, have joined us at the Constructors project this year. They also have a motorhome and arrived Saturday afternoon and are parked right next to us. We are really enjoying getting to know them. So, the guys can go to work together early and the girls can ride together and go to the job site later in the morning. The weathermen predicted 70% chance of storms today but they were WRONG!! It did start raining on the girls at the campground at 6:03 but not the guys on the mountain in Rosalie. To be honest they did get wet about 8:30 and they did stop work for a short time but there were NO storms today. The temperature was lower than it was Saturday and the guys accomplished an amazing amount of work. All the exterior walls of the new building are now up and a few of the interior walls are up. It was truly wonderful to see the transformation. There were about 25-30 people working on the job site and then of course another 25 or more working to prepare the three meals for the day and they were 3 good meals. Its so much fun to see everyone working together – the younger ones being mentored by the older guys and gals. Even the children get in on the mission by serving the building crew Popsicles and snow cones. Anne and Debra and Cecelia’s team of 7, prepared dinner tonight. It was a good meal of ham, sweet potatoes, marinated salad, green salad, squash casserole, English peas, cantaloupe, watermelon, dessert of coconut cake and other cakes, rolls. The folks that had been working on the job site were really hungry so there were not many leftovers to put away at the end of the day. We are now all back to the RVs and really tired but know that it was a really great day! We will start it all over again at 4:30 in the morning.