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Volunteers from local church put their faith into action

Volunteers from New Prospect Missionary Baptist Church in Detroit are working alongside family partners Jonathan Bell and Shetella Jonson this week to build their house on 25th Street. Members of the church have supported Habitat in the past by providing paper products for meals on the work site, but the 2005 Jimmy Carter Work Project is their first build as a church. In addition to providing labor for Jonathan and Shetella’s house, New Prospect is also the sponsor.

Barbara Dickie organized volunteers from her Detroit church to sponsor and build a house during the Jimmy Carter Work Project. She will spend her birthday on the build site.

When the church’s senior pastor, Dr. Wilma R. Johnson, suggested sponsoring a Habitat house, the congregation jumped at the opportunity. “We rallied behind the pastor when we found out about this project,” says Barbara Dickie, the group’s leader and volunteer coordinator.

“It feels great to be able to sponsor this house as a church,” she continues. “Christ talks about helping people outside the four walls of the church and this is an opportunity to do just that. If all the churches we have in the United States banded together, we could get a home built in every community.”

When asked why she would take vacation time to build houses, Barbara doesn’t hesitate to respond: “You’re doing something you feel good about. We know we’re doing something for the Lord. My birthday is Tuesday, and I plan to be here working that day.”

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