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This week we welcomed eight men and six women from Pennsylvania as our weekly volunteers.  Dave Hughes entered his final week as Project Director and will be heading back to Ohio with his wife Patti, the Office Manager.  Ron and Char Roth of Ohio stayed on as Crew Leader and Cook.  Other Crew leaders were Eric Douglas from Mississippi and Neil Pettifor from Indiana.  Neil also heads home after this week and is much appreciated for his valuable experience.  Rounding out the team were Michelle Weaver on crew and Melanie Zimmerman as Assistant Cook.

It seems repetitive, but there was again more mudding and sanding at the Alan Ladd and Lila Torres homes. Drywall finishing is messy and not very glamorous, but every detail matters for these homes. The work at Norma Russell’s house has moved on to the interior painting stage and we began installing her kitchen cabinets.

At the house of Lisa Davis which we started last week, the crews put the shingles on, installed exterior sheeting and doors and put in windows. Then they began putting on the cement board siding.

We began work on another house this week.  The home of Evelyn Duke was framed and enclosed by local contractors, then turned over to MDS for completion.  We began shingling the roof and will move forward from there.

Our guests for supper this week were Lila Torres and her friend Monyca.  Fortunately, they were not at home during the tornado. Lila’s house was shifted from the foundation and the walls were falling in. Though she had some insurance, it was not sufficient to cover rebuilding and she waited over a year to receive a settlement. The rebuilding in Dawson Springs seems to be winding down two years after the tornado.  Not that everyone is back home, but most of the eligible homeowners have been identified and have homes under construction by MDS and other organizations.

Two more homes were dedicated this week, each with a ceremony involving our volunteers, partners, and community members.  Each family was presented with a handmade comforter and a Bible, then we sang a song together. Local pastor Jeff Winfrey concluded with an illustration comparing this rebuilding effort to that of the people who rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem: many different people working side by side. Darryl and Janie Russell will now have a house next door to their daughter, Brittany who received an MDS-built home last year.  And Shelby and Lacey Cummings will soon move into a new house with their four children.

It was a good week with joyful volunteers heading to the jobsites each day and yet returning with enough energy for some volleyball or other games. As we return to our homes after serving on a project, we leave knowing that we have done some small part to help a homeowner and their community. “May the favor of the Lord rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us – yes, establish the work of our hands”  Psalm 90:17

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