Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Operation Noah - Tuesday
Today we got a lot of work done at the house, which is located in the Upper 9th Ward of New Orleans. Glenn built his sheetrock wall to cover a huge hole with a lot of help from Frances, and Dan and James also put down a lot of baseboards and thesholds. Most of the rest of us painted or helped them with those projects. Julie and Debra spent a lot of time painting the baseboards. Bob scraped the ceiling of the porch and Bob, Milton and Becky painted a lot outside, while Mary, Pat and Greg painted a lot inside.
There are a lot of druggies in the area who will steal anything to sell it for drugs, so we had to keep a constant watch on our supplies, and after we finished we had to take it with us or hide it so they couldn't look in the windows and see what was there. We may have hid the equipment from the thieves, but the love bugs found us, and we had them even get into the paint!
The owners, Tony & Julie Jackson, came by to see the work and we got to talk to them. Julie came in the middle of the afternoon after getting out of class. She is going to school to be a nurse. Tony got off work early from his job at a container company, and came by to see us in the late afternoon as we were finishing for the day. Here is a picture of Julie with James, Mary, Dan, Milton and Becky, and a picture of Tony with Brother Bob.
We learned that Tony & Julie's home had about 5 feet of water inside it after Katrina. The water was actually 8 feet deep, but the house is about 3 feet off the ground. They went to Texas, then Hurricane Rita made them flee Texas and go to Georgia. After over a year and a half, they were able to come back, but they are having to rent a place in East New Orleans while they try to fix up their house. He said, "We go two steps forward and then two steps back," because their house has been broken in twice. The thieves even stole his door. The good thing is that his neighbors watch his house and report anything to the police.
Tony and Julie are Baptists, although Tony admitted to me that his work had kept him from attending church much. We prayed with both of them, and Tony was eager to get a "Here's Hope" New Testament in modern English. They were very excited about what we were doing and very appreciative. Tony said, "Everybody here knows what Operation Noah is." Since June of 2006, there have been 25,000 volunteers with Operation Noah in New Orleans who have completed 1735 jobs, including 169 homes completely rebuilt, 18 churches completed, and 407 people have accepted Christ as Savior!
Pray for the safety of our equipment from thieves, and pray for Tony & Julie as they rebuild their lives.