9/11 'Building on Faith' Events Answer President's Call for Volunteers
AMERICUS, Ga., August 26, 2002 -- Each year in September, Habitat for Humanity International holds "Building on Faith" week, a time when the organization celebrates its partnership with denominations around the world by building houses as a global witness to faith in action. This year's Building on Faith week, Sept. 8-15, is more poignant than in years' past as Americans pause to remember the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Uniting people of diverse faiths in the common cause of eliminating poverty housing and rebuilding communities, Habitat for Humanity affiliates around the country are reaching out to families in need by holding multi-faith builds and building homes with firefighters, police officers and airline employees.
As President Bush has called on Americans to volunteer their time in memory of the 9/11 devastation, Habitat for Humanity will be providing a vehicle for people to contribute their time and talents nationwide - to focus on construction rather than destruction.
"Every year since 1995, we have worked to show our faith in God by bringing churches and other faith groups together to build modest homes with families in need," said Millard Fuller, founder and president of Habitat for Humanity International. "The Bible says we should counteract hate with love. This year we are inviting all people of faith and goodwill to join us as we lend a hand up to people who need simple, decent and affordable homes."
Fuller will be traveling to:
Redmond, Wash.: Protestants, Catholics, Muslims and Jews work on a home Sept. 8.
Tacoma, Wash.: People of different faiths work on two homes Sept. 9.
Duluth, Minn.: Lutherans build two homes and hold a community-wide service Sept. 10.
Lubbock, Texas: Christians, Muslims and Jews will build "The House of Abraham." Churches will build 15 homes to celebrate the affiliate's 15th anniversary Sept. 11.
Lakeland, Fla.: Various church denominations build eight homes Sept 12.
Concord, N.C.: Four church denominations build eight homes Sept 13.
Durham, N.C.: "House Party" fund-raiser at Duke University president's home Sept. 14.
Grand Rapids, Mich.: House dedication Sept 15.
Other Building on Faith week events in the United States and abroad include:
Liverpool, England: Liverpool HFH, in partnership with the City of Liverpool, will beam two columns of light 11 miles into the night sky above Liverpool's waterfront on Sept. 11.
Westchester, N.Y.: Several fire departments, police officers, synagogues and churches will work together during the week, using building materials salvaged from "Ground Zero."
Fort Worth, Texas: Firefighters and pilots from American Airlines (two of the company's planes were hijacked Sept. 11, 2001) will build a home Sept. 11 and 12.
Atlanta: Five faiths will dedicate a home Sept. 15.
Evansville, Ind.: Firefighters build a house in memory of their fallen colleagues. They will dedicate the home 2 p.m. Sept. 11.
"We as firefighters wanted to do something to honor those who gave their lives on 9/11," said John Riggs, an Evansville, Ind., firefighter. "Just as those men and women gave their all to help those in need, we were given an opportunity - through the building of this Habitat home - to help someone else in need and also to pay tribute to our fallen brothers."
As part of Building on Faith week, HFHI founder Fuller will speak about his latest book, Building Materials for Life, a collection of 40 inspirational essays focusing on unique spiritual lessons.
For more information about Habitat for Humanity International, log on to our website at www.habitat.org . Digital photographs are available upon request.
Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing. Founded by Millard Fuller, along with his wife, Linda, Habitat for Humanity International and its affiliates in more than 3,000 communities in 83 nations have built and sold more than 125,000 homes to partner families with no-profit, zero-interest mortgages.