Day 6, August 9

Day 6

Our day began with a devotion given by Rick Lahy where the topic was acceptance and the Lord takes us anyway He can. We were chomping at the bit to get to work so we left 30 minutes early to our job sites. Everyone wanted to give our respective home owners one last day of hard work. Our theme for the week was to show these people Hope and we pray that we accomplished our mission.

Team Rockin in the OC spent our last day at Ms Eileen’s house. Today was spent wrapping up as many loose ends as possible. We finished texturing the stucco, sanded our last dry wall joints and primer coated the dry wall throughout the entire home. The sanding queens became the painting queens and were joined by a few of the men. Lastly, some of the guys hung storm doors and we did a good general clean up. Just prior to our departure, Ms Eileen called and asked us to stay to unload a truck load of flooring. We could not turn her down so we carried two pallets of hard wood flooring into the home just to get our appetites up for dinner.

Atlantic City – Keep your head down team split up in to two teams. Gary and Taylor went to a new location of a home owned by a young Methodist minister. They painted the whole downstairs. Mike, Mark and Cindy finished up at Ms. Edna’s. It is amazing that when we started with one little light hanging in the kitchen and a huge whopping hole where the bathroom is supposed to be and left with everything ready for paint, closets and electricity in the whole house. Mike and Cindy completed the drywall work in the bathroom and Mark put in electricity for a washer and dryer in the apartment next door. We then moved over to a new house. Mark worked on electricity for the new house; Mike put down cement board and helped Mark. Cindy sanded, spread mud for drywall and painted.

It is always a bittersweet time to come help out where there has been a natural disaster. We never feel like we have accomplished all that needs to be done but we have completed all that God has set aside for us in New Jersey. Tonight we are going to treat ourselves to local seafood, get to bed at an early hour and be on the road by 5:30 in the morning. Look forward to seeing you all soon! Your FCC Mission Team.

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Day 5, August 8

Day 5

Our day started when Pastor Tim, the minister of Linwood Community Church, came and shared a devotion with us. He spoke about Jesus healing at the pool of Bethesda and related it to the work we are doing here this week. We also said our good byes to the group from Ohio. They left after lunch today to head home. It was great spending time with other Christians who have a common interest to help those in need. Here are out team stories for today:

Team Rockin in the OC continued work on Ms. Eileen’s house in Ocean City. Our Team was joined today by Gary, Joe Newburn and Rick Lahy from the Keep Your Head Down team. When we closed yesterday we told you that we had begun applying stucco on the lower level of the home. Well none of us really knew what we were doing, so we just did the best we could. The Lord’s timing impeccable as always, delivered JoeNewburn to the Team. Joe used to work stucco with his dad and in a short time he had us working like a smooth oiled machine. Tell me that was not a God wink! Rick was our mud mixer extraordinaire and we finished two coats on the entire house today. Gary and Edward began work on the inside of the house with the sanding queens who soon kicked him out. He joined the men outside and took on the project of building the landing from the steps leading down from the back deck. This remains a work in progress. Due to quick progress inside of the house two of the sanding queens, Tasha and Carrie, came outside and worked on stucco again. This was a blessing for the old guys as they could both get down low to the ground and had the ability to get back up without grunts and groans. This was our most productive day.

Atlantic City – Keep your head down team dwindles to Mike, Taylor, Cindy and Mark. Mike and Taylor prevailed in the bathroom and finished the blue board, floors and walls! God is so good. It started as a huge whole in the ground and now it is a bathroom for Ms. Edna and her family. Mark and Cindy finished the sheetrock work and got one coat on all the walls in the bathroom. Taylor and Mark had a “keep your head down moment. “ A lady came around the house next door with a knife and threatened her boyfriend! The look on Taylor’s face was priceless, but never fear we were heels and elbows if things got out of hand. We also were able to give Brazeria’s dad the basketball that Joe Newburn bought for her and gave the blanket with the prayer hearts in it for her sister. Brazeria’s dad was very thankful.

After a very tiring day, we returned to our mission station, took much needed showers, and ate a nice dinner of barbecued pulled chicken and French fries. This was followed by our evening review of daily events. Half way through the review we were joined by Kim Sunday and children. The star of the show was Mike and Kim’s grandbaby. This evening most of us took a drive into Atlantic City to see the sites and drive by the Keep Your Head Down team’s project homes. Like all of our mission trips, we have received many blessings, but I imagine that by tomorrow afternoon we will start smelling the barn and be anxious to start our trek back home.

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Cindy works on sheetrock.

Cindy works on sheetrock.

Mark and Cindy cutting sheetrock.

Mark and Cindy cutting sheetrock.

Taylor hard at work.

Taylor hard at work.

Mike and Mark

Mike and Mark

Mike Sunday's son, daughter in-law, and grandson stop by for a visit.

Mike Sunday’s son, daughter in-law, and grandson stop by for a visit.

Edward and Gary build a landing for the back deck.

Edward and Gary build a landing for the back deck.

Gary on the phone (again)!

Gary on the phone (again)!

Sue sands final coat in this room.

Sue sands final coat in this room.

Carrie sanding the stair well.

Carrie sanding the stair well.

Sight seeing on the boardwalk in Ocean City, NJ.

Sight seeing on the boardwalk in Ocean City, NJ.

FCC leave their mark.

FCC leave their mark.

Edward wears the last doughnut.

Edward wears the last doughnut.

Preacher Tim from Linwood Community Church shares a devotion with us.

Preacher Tim from Linwood Community Church shares a devotion with us.

Our friends from Ohio who shared the mission station with us this week.

Our friends from Ohio who shared the mission station with us this week.

Tasha paints the ceilings.

Tasha paints the ceilings.

Edward works on deck.

Edward works on deck.

Joe clean mixer.

Joe clean mixer.

Rick mixes up parge coat.

Rick mixes up parge coat.

Ken, Tasha, and Brett working on the wall.

Ken, Tasha, and Brett working on the wall.

Joe covers the high spots.

Joe covers the high spots.

Day 4, August 7

Day 4

Mark and Cindy started our day with a devotion on “controlling the tongue” and our teams continually tried to put the lesson to use throughout the day as we had many opportunities to cast the first stone. Needing a break from the usually breakfast, we got our grease fix by stopping at McDonald’s which fueled us through the morning. Here are the team stories for today:

    Team Rockin in the OC

The men did not have a good night last night. It seems that the Snoring Olympics was going on. We are proud to announce that the gold, silver and bronze medals went to members of FCC Mission Team. Unfortunately, nobody got much sleep and the men started the day a little on the grumpy side. We started our morning once again sanding, sanding and sanding. The sanding queens were in rare form, as each lady, over a period of two days have turned into true artisans. After lunch we got the opportunity to try something new. Our Fuller Center manager Neil, showed up with a truck full of sand and a cement mixer. In the sprinkling rain, we all learned to mix stucco. We all learned to sling cement on the outside wall of Eileen’s home. This process was called parging. Of course it started to rain and given the opportunity to quit for the day or continue on, Susan said let’s mix another batch! And we did. The rain turned into a torrential downpour and the neighbors warned us that the streets would flood. The entire team took turns slinging the mud and were quite a sight to see. In between these two tasks, the owner of the home, Eileen, surprised us with the best homemade crème filled donuts we’ve ever tasted. We also had a wonderful visit from Jackie, her neighbor, who is keeping a photo journal of the progress made on the house. As the wheelbarrow filled with water from the rain, we were forced to call it a day. Soaked to the bone, we all headed back to the mission station for a hot shower and steaming bowls of chili.

    Atlantic City, NJ Keep your head down crew

On our way to the job site we passed a guy driving beside us eating a bowl of noodles with a pair of chop sticks! Only in New Jersey! Today we completed some projects. Joe was able to test his water lines and we had no leaks! Gary was able to complete the bathroom floor and put on cement board, which turned out to be the only level flooring in the entire house. The spot he was working in was only four foot by four foot. During this project he injured his thumb with a drill, but true to his pastor training, he never uttered any ugly words. Gary being the first one to shed blood earned his “purple heart” award. Taylor and Mike finished their sheetrock projects and also the blue board in the bathroom. Rick and Cindy sanded, sanded, sanded, and mudded all the sheetrock projects. Mark finished the electricity and we had lights! We saw another crew here working from Pikeville, NC!

Closing out our day our lovely ladies took our dirty laundry to the laundry mat washed it so we could have clean dry cloths the rest of the week. As soon as they return from doing laundry, we are going out to do a little sightseeing.

Rick finishes sheetrock.

Rick finishes sheetrock.

Mike and Taylor cut sheetrock for the bathroom.

Mike and Taylor cut sheetrock for the bathroom.

Gary and Joe finish up a plumbing job.

Gary and Joe finish up a plumbing job.

Mark cuts a piece of sheetrock.

Mark cuts a piece of sheetrock.

Cindy works in the closet.

Cindy works in the closet.

Jeremy rest and works at the same time.

Jeremy rest and works at the same time.

Edward sanding the sheetrock.

Edward sanding the sheetrock.

Carrie uses power sander to finish a room.

Carrie uses power sander to finish a room.

Joe put final coat of mud on the laundry room.

Joe put final coat of mud on the laundry room.

Ken, Joe, and Brett finishing one side of the house with the parge coat.

Ken, Joe, and Brett finishing one side of the house with the parge coat.

Sue and Edward, awww....  So sweet!

Sue and Edward, awww…. So sweet!

Ms. Eileen brings the crew fresh homemade doughnuts.

Ms. Eileen brings the crew fresh homemade doughnuts.

Susan's new pet.

Susan’s new pet.

Sue and Jeremy break in new shovels.

Sue and Jeremy break in new shovels.

Tasha learns a new skill.

Tasha learns a new skill.

Susan and Joe playing in the mud.

Susan and Joe playing in the mud.

Carrie loading Jeremy with a shot of mud! Carrie loading Jeremy with a shot of mud!

Tuesday, August 6

Day 3

We began our day with a David and Goliath devotion given by Joe Newburn. He gave an analogy of Goliath being the Casinos here in Atlantic City and us being the David’s trying to help the little guy. It was very touching and applicable to our mission here in New Jersey. After the devotion the crews left for the worksites. Each crew has written a summary of their day.

Atlantic City “keep your head down group.” We failed to mention the weather in New Jersey! We have always burn slam up on mission trips but this year God has smiled down on us. It has been high 70’s during the day and low 60’s at night. That may have been our best working weather yet.
We were going to our job this morning and there was a man in the fountain in front of the Trump Plaza taking coins and the police were running him out. That was a happening for us. Well, we mentioned we are the “keep your head down group” and we have another charter member-Mike Sunday who teaches safety classes including OSHA regulations! None of those can be applied here this week in this house. Joe Newburn finished the plumbing for that house, Mike and Taylor are hanging blue board and sheetrock. Gary is cutting and measuring, Rick and Cindy are working sheetrock. Mark is still wiring the house. Mark has a new name-“Sparky” and Cindy is the “mud lady.” Mark got his new name when he accidently set off arcs of electricity while wiring a panel. Taylor thought his drill was exploding but it was only the flash from Mark’s event. Ms. Edna, the homeowner comes by periodically and checks our progress and loves talking to everybody.

The Rocking in the OC Group continued working on Miss Eileen’s house today finishing up all of the sheet rock and mudding the entire home before we wrapped up for the day. Miss Eileen is very outgoing and even volunteered our services to her neighbors. During an afternoon break a very nice gentlemen came up to us and asked if one of the men could help his elderly father into the bathroom. Jeremy immediately sprung to action, volunteering to help the gentlemen. Please ask Jeremy about this call to discipleship when he returns from the trip… The sanding queens, Susan, Sue, Carrie Ann and Tasha, continued to sand, mud and clean like there was no tomorrow. In addition, they constructed a 30 foot long 4×10 beam and installed it under the front porch; it was an awesome feat of girl power. The guys, Jeremy, Ken, Edward, Joe and Brett worked finishing up the dry wall and helped the ladies install their beam. It was a truly beautiful day and temperatures were pretty comfortable for all, with the exception of three of the guys working in a bathroom where much heat was built up due to their hot air.

We ended the day with our nightly get together where our different teams compared notes and war stories on what we had accomplished, seen and experienced during the day. We have kept things pretty lite and humor ruled the evening.

Taylor and Gary discussing fractions!

Taylor and Gary discussing fractions!

Mark rewiring the house.

Mark rewiring the house.

Joe trying his hand at plumbing.

Joe trying his hand at plumbing.

More work going on!

More work going on!

Mike and Rick hanging sheetrock.

Mike and Rick hanging sheetrock.

Mike and Taylor moving sheetrock.

Mike and Taylor moving sheetrock.

Team "Keep Your Head Down"

Team “Keep Your Head Down”

Cool cats!

Cool cats!

Jeremy, Edward, and Joe work and hanging sheetrock in a bathroom.

Jeremy, Edward, and Joe work and hanging sheetrock in a bathroom.

Ken finishing the sheetrock.

Ken finishing the sheetrock.

Susan mudding the seams in the sheetrock.

Susan mudding the seams in the sheetrock.

Ken cuts sheetrock.

Ken cuts sheetrock.

Carrie and Sue prepare beam to receive bolts.

Carrie and Sue prepare beam to receive bolts.

Tasha gets the drill ready.

Tasha gets the drill ready.

Monday, August 5

Day 2 – The day started with the group coming together for breakfast.   Joe and Susan Stroud followed with  a devotion about not fitting in at church.  We then meet our mission leader and divided up into three crews.  One crew was from the five workers from Ohio who are also staying at the mission station with us.  Our church members were split between the other two groups.  Each group chose a name for their team and below is a description of their day:

Rockin in the OC (Ocean City NJ).   Our Team was assigned to sheet rock and basically refurbish a home in Ocean City, NJ.  We actually got off to a quick start, forming teams within our team, we got to the task at hand of dry walling, mudding, taping and sanding.   We affectionately labeled Tasha and Carrie Ann the Sanding Queens singing the old ABBA Dancing Queens song to them.  Sue and Susan quickly became the mudding and taping gurus while Brett and Ken worked on dry walling, taping and mudding a bedroom and a few closets.  Jeremy, Joe and Edward handled the lion’s share of dry walling the entry way, the laundry room and part of the kitchen.    Shortly after our arrival the homeowner showed up.   She was a gracious lady who could not thank us enough for what we were doing for her.  We explained to her that the blessing was all ours.  She came back this afternoon with much of her family and she was more than pleased with the progress we had made thus far.   

Atlantic City  -“ Keeping Our  Head Down Team.” Our team is working on Ms. Edna’s home. It is Atlantic City and in a poor section of town but we are looking at skyscrapers all around us.   That home has been in her family for five generations.  She was in the home when Super storm Sandy hit and rode out the storm in the second story of her home.  There are 4 apartments in this 100 year old home.  Joe Newburn was working on plumbing.  Mike Sunday/Gary Edens were working on a closet all day and in their defense the walls were all over the place.  Mark, Rick, Taylor and Cindy worked on Electrical, framing in the electric box and sheetrock in a closet.  The electric wiring in this home has the asbestos coating!  Ms. Edna visited a couple of times during the day to check our progress.  Braziera-Edna’s granddaughter tried to assist the whole team in their work for the day.  She helped Joe with his plumbing, played step thru the stud walls with Gary and Mike and help spackle some sheetrock. Now for our Team name!  It is hard to lay down your jobs when you are serving on a mission team.  Rick is a
home inspector and with the electrical, plumbing and structural issues he has to just look away and “keep his head down.”  A lady down the street was throwing rocks and beating her dog with a stick.  Joe is with animal control and had to just look away.  Mark is an electrical trades teacher and had to disregard all his training in that wiring job!  So we are just keeping our heads down and doing our work and what is asked of us and trying to remember these are people homes that they are so proud of and have worked so hard to keep after the storm.      

We all finished up about five o’clock and returned to the mission station where we showered up and were fed a delicious meal of Tater Tot Caserole, salad and sweet tea.   We were not as impressed with breakfast this morning however, as in the past, we have been spoiled by Cindy and Jackie fixing us bacon, eggs, grits and all the fixins that make a true southern breakfast.    We made our own lunch so we cannot complain about that.  Well it’s getting late so I’ll close for tonight.

Your Mission Team in the OC…

Due to problems uploading pictures from one camera, we do not have many pictures of one of the teams. We will try to resolve the problem tomorrow.

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Sunday, August 4th

It has been a great start for the mission team. Sixteen volunteers from First Christian Church left Richlands around 5:30 A.M. headed for Atlantic City, NJ. It was a very good ride up the interstate. We stopped at a rest area for lunch and then took communion before leaving for the second leg of the trip. We arrived at our mission station around 4:30 P.M., which is actually located in Linwood, NJ at Linwood Community Church. We were greeted by our host and attended a briefing to prepare us for our week. It as a long day so shortly after our dinner, everyone hit the sack. We are looking forward to all of the blessings God has in store for us this week. Participants in the trip this year are as follows:

Mike Sunday, Edward Williams, Ken Brown, Taylor Bostic, Gary Edens, Susan Stroud, Joe Stroud, Sue Miller, Tasha Kuester, Carrie Lockamy, Cindy Lunceford, Jeremy Holley, Ricky Lahy, Joe Newburn, Mark Lunceford, and Brett Miller.

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