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Our big crew this week was from Ohio. Then there was Bryant Swiers’ cousin Tobias from Minnesota, and Steve Barth’s sister with her husband and two daughters from Pennsylvania. We had an awesome week enjoying each other, playing games, teasing, tasting alligator, holding alligators, tasting Cajun food, and getting lots of work done in between.

Terry Prudhomme’s house, the one I have pictured in the last couple of reports, was mostly getting walls mudded and sanded in preparation for painting. The porch got painted, more electrical work got done, and a set of stairs was built. Ed Martin led the team there.

On Wednesday we dedicated another home, this time belonging to Veronica Joseph with her husband Ronny. Each time is so special, as we speak the blessing and the home owner responds, always fighting tears. It makes one realize a little of what it means to be pulled out of despair and back to hope. Veronica and Ronny work as janitors for the school board. You can imagine they don’t make much money for house repairs.

Meanwhile, Bryant’s crew was busy on two different roofs during the week. They repaired a metal roof for Kiki Hardy, a faithful provider of good food and good cheer for MDS volunteers. It was hard for our crew to stay away from the alligator-infested waters behind Kiki’s house! Watching the alligators was too much fun!!

At Cecelia Byers’ house, the roof was replaced and old lathe siding removed, all within three or four days. There was fascia and soffit to replace and paint, and drip to install. Cecelia is one of those people who just bubbles over with gratefulness!

The biggest job, started last week, is at Stephanie Celestine’s house. Now that the new subfloor is all in, Doug ended his six-month service with us by leading a crew this week in framing interior walls and tearing off old siding. They also put in windows. The whole house is now fitted with new studs inside, and house wrap and new windows outside. We are waiting for the inspectors to come see it before we can continue.

Very sadly, by the end of Friday we had to take leave of Doug. Luckily Tobias could step in while we await the arrival of our new crew leader, Herb Hoover, who is coming tomorrow, for the final two weeks of the Jennings 2022-23 chapter.


Submitted by Christa Barth on behalf of the Jennings team

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