September 20, 2023
GPC Communications Committee
“The Ears of God”
Written by Lucille Baur
There are twelve of us now on this mission trip. I arrived this morning. The first thing that came to Mary Beth’s mind was the twelve apostles. But after a hard day’s work, we are better described as the Dirty Dozen!
Yesterday all the site workers were assigned to the same house. Today team members were broken up into three groups, and work began at two additional home sites. Stuart Morrison, his friend Dave Salak, and Bruce Andrews headed out to check out electrical problems at their new work site. Not one of them claims experience as an electrician, but after quite a bit of investigating and debating the situation (which three excel at), the problem is solved. Stuart was pleased to report that they are now in “problem remediation” mode.
Jerry Brown and his friend/trip recruit Barry Berson tackled flooring issues at the third home site. Veteran mission tripper Jerry said it wasn’t difficult; they just pulled up some vinyl flooring that wasn’t stable, fixed the underlayment, and put back the original planks. Because of their careful touch and attention to detail with this project, not a plank was lost.
This writer, Lucille Baur, became the fifth on a team composed of Fletcher Tukes, Steve Ward, Edco Bailey, and Laura Wilson, that stayed at the first day’s work site. It is from that location that the title of this blog entry is based.
If you are up to date with your blog reading, you know that Fletcher read the prayer of St. Teresa of Avila as a devotion at the beginning of the first day of work. The idea that we are all the hands, feet, and eyes of God was very impactful to everyone. Today, some of us became the ears of God as well.
Our homeowner has endured a lot and he struggles to keep moving past his troubles. A motivating joy in his life is music. During our lunch break today, while our cooks Mary Beth and Yvonne Miller were visiting us, he brought his guitar and played and sang for us. He calls his musical style East Carolina blues, and I think singing the blues has been healing for him. He spent most of the afternoon with us and I think it was also healing for him to talk to us as we worked. He shared many details of his life and his gratitude for the work that we are all doing. After sleeping on a cot under a tarp in his front yard and on a friend’s boat, we hope to make it possible for him to sleep back inside his home very soon.
The work isn’t easy, and the site conditions are challenging, but we had a beautiful Carolina blue sky and the certain knowledge that we are making a real difference. More than enough motivation to keep going.
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