Our trip to Panama City was our first time to volunteer with Samaritan’s Purse. We saw this trip as an opportunity to do something hands on with Samaritan’s Purse and to serve with other members of our church. While we worked hard for 4 ½ days straight, we found the experience to be rewarding and enjoyable. Alongside volunteers from North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida we worked on a home that suffered extensive damage from hurricane Michael in October Samaritan’s Purse crew leaders directed our efforts and provided instruction as we painted, installed doorways, baseboard (Terri learned to use a nail gun!) kitchen cabinets, windows and vinyl flooring, and painted some more. Just as God transforms our lives as believers, we watched this house undergo a major transformation from day one to five, from a boarded up house to a house that was becoming inhabitable once again. We met the homeowner and saw the joy and tears on her face as she saw her hurricane battered house becoming a home. It brought us joy to serve in this way, with our hands and physical labor, meeting the homeowner, and knowing we were truly making a difference in her life – as opposed to just writing a check.
We were impressed with Samaritan’s Purse organization, efficiency and hospitality and found all the staff to be gracious, friendly and strong followers of Jesus Christ. As often happens on a mission trip, we came away immensely blessed watching God at work in Panama City in so many lives, and counting the innumerable ways He has blessed us in our lives. For a U.S. mission trip, Samaritan’s Purse is an excellent option, and we will most likely serve with them again.
When I was asked to travel to Panama City to help with a rebuild, I had no qualms. I knew God was leading me there to not only help rebuild houses that had been damaged by Hurricane Michael, but also rebuild the faith of those who had suffered loss. I loved every part of the five days I was there: the bunks, the showers, the food, the devotions, the prayers and, of course the overly sore body after a day of either laying molding, nail gunning, caulking, painting, etc. I was determined to extend myself in the service of God just as He has extended himself for me. I met wonderful faithful people and worked along side of them. I praise them for the patience they gave me and their encouragement. After 16 months since the hurricane hit, there is still devastation, still building to do. Being there in the company of great people made me feel as if I had been in church all day every day. That is a feeling that can’t be described. I pray to go again. God bless, Charla Summers
March 19-22: Benchmark Ministries. Gooch Gap, Appalachian Trail camping and ministry.
April 2020: Navajo Nation Rebuild, Whippoorwill, NM
Also, don’t forget our giving opportunities:
The Kainos Project a. Materials and supplies for our service projects. b. Food for Saturday morning c. Making copies for Saturday morning d. Donations to families for utilities and groceries
Navajo Missions a. Firewood and coal purchases for Navajo pastors and families in need of heat b. Materials and supplies for Navajo Rebuild and support for our partners John Emerson and Pete Belon of Cornerstone Ministries c. Expenses with the annual trip to the Navajo Nation
Stone Mountain Coop a. Operation expenses
NewCreation517 a. Contributions for Willie and Shengxi Smith to cover expenses.
Contributions for all these efforts can be made on Saturday morning into the respective “oatmeal cans” or online to Grace and designate “NNMG/xxxxx”.
Greetings from the Navajo Nation, Blue Gap, Arizona! Here’s the couple we’re building the home for, beautifully singing “How Great Thou Art” in their native Navajo language. Also included are a photo of their current “house” (1 room, with plastic covering two of the small window openings, and only a screen and a sheet over the other; it was 20 degrees last night and it’s only October- they heat with scarce– and expensive –firewood; they have no indoor plumbing or water).
Also a photo of the new house being built by the two of us from GFC/Snellville, New Name Men’s Group; a brother from Florida (82 years young, and working circles around the rest of us); and 6 wonderful Navajo followers of Jesus. (We’re praying for materials or $1500 for trusses for the roof for the new house so it doesn’t sit open all winter!) 🙏 The exterior and interior walls went up in 2 days, no injuries– and great fellowship with our brothers and sisters in Christ! Thanks to all for your continued prayer covering!