More than 150 volunteers braved the rain and cool temperatures Saturday morning to begin building walls for a new Habitat for Humanity home.
Hammers could be heard pounding throughout the Trinity Evangelical United Methodist Church parking lot in Upper Sandusky, where volunteers — young and old, church members and non-church members — all worked together.
“There’s no electricity and no power tools; just all hard work and muscle,” said the Rev. Jim Stauffer, pastor of Trinity Evangelical UMC.
Stauffer said the turn out was larger than he expected.
“It’s way beyond our expectations,” Stauffer said. “It’s a great way for our congregation and community folks to come out and be involved in doing good for each other.”
“It’s just an incredible day, an incredible opportunity to share God’s love with a family that needs a home,” Stauffer’s pastoral assistant Steve Sturgeon added. “Jesus said, ‘When you do this for the least of them, you do it for me,’ so it’s our way to serve God by serving them.”
Local volunteers framed the walls of a four-bedroom house for a Habitat for Humanity family in Marion.
“This is an excellent turnout,” said Lynn Zucker, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Marion County. “We’ve never had walls from a wall-build before for Habitat in Marion and we’re very excited to be getting these. We’re just kind of floored over the turnout here.”
Zucker said she has been with Habitat for Humanity for six months. This was her first time seeing a wall build in progress.
“It is very awesome to see it from the beginning and it’s very awesome to see something that, if we had six to eight volunteers working once a week it would take them several weeks to get this done,” Zucker said. “It’s very exciting to get to see them do it in such a quick time.”
Most of the volunteers were members of the church, but some also came from the community to lend a hand.
“The community was invited,” Stauffer said. “There’s a lot of congregation folks but there are some folks who came along as friends and guests to be a part of this too.”
Upper Sandusky residents Jenni and Jonathan Miller are not members of the church, but wanted to come out and do their part to help.
“My husband Jonathan and I always wanted to do a Habitat build and this is the first time that one’s ever come to town, so it just sounded like fun,” Jenni Miller said. “I can’t believe it; it’s like a barn raising. … I can’t believe the way the ministry has made it kind of idiot proof so that those of us who don’t know what we’re doing can make this happen. It’s cool.”
The frames were loaded onto a semi-trailer Sunday and taken to 206 Olney Ave., Marion, where the house will be completed by Habitat for Humanity volunteers.
“Thank you Upper Sandusky for giving to Marion,” Zucker said. “We definitely appreciate it. We would love for anybody to come visit and see the home while it’s being built or after it’s built.”
By CHANDA NEELY