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The fall season has been busy and productive in Jennings. In October a new home dedication attracted about 80 people to help Shirley Zeno, the new home owner and the current MDS volunteers, celebrate the accomplishment. It is the only new home built by MDS in Jennings.

Volunteers came from New York, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Indiana, Ohio, Virginia, Illinois, Kansas, and Germany. Over 75 weekly volunteers and nearly 30 different long-term volunteers participated in a variety of repairs for 10 home owners.  When the project closes for the Christmas break, nearly all will be completed. There is still plenty of work for those coming to Jennings this Spring.

A strong relationship with Jennings Church of Christ has made this project unique from the beginning. Volunteers continue to benefit from a weekly Wednesday evening meal prepared by the church; a couple from the church does laundry several times each week for volunteers; church members have driven volunteers to work sites and the airport; volunteers are invited to homes of members for holiday meals.

The church community, as well as the MDS community, was saddened to hear of the death of Don Mintmier this fall. Don served in Jennings numerous times and his last MDS assignment was here. He is one of over 1200 volunteers who have signed and decorated the wall that shapes four bunk rooms at the Jennings camp. (see photo) Pastor Roy tells each volunteer group of his plan to permanently install the bunk walls around the perimeter of the gym as a memorial to all the hours donate in Jennings when MDS concludes its work here.

As usual, volunteers not only contribute their construction skills and energy on job sites, they also relate in a variety of ways to home owners. This fall music seemed to play an important role in those relationships. In the photo, a group of young women from Southern Indiana took time off from their roof installation work to bless Marshall Jackson, the home owner with music. The next day Mr. Marshall blessed the young women with a smoked pork dish for their lunch.

Don Yoder

Jennings Office Manager

December 12, 2022

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