Saturday, November 25, 2006

Live from Pearlington - Nov. 25, 2006

Yesterday morning, I received a call from Laurie Spaschak informing me that Dr. Charles Holmes, head of Cooperative Baptist Fellowship here in Pearlington, had been involved in a serious incident at the Recovery Center and could I come and help? I was there in minutes, but "my Spidey-senses were tingling." Sure enough, I walked into the Pearl*Mart to be swept into a giant hug by a grinning Charlie.

And so it went for me in Pearlington yesterday, getting caught up on progress and reconnecting with some great friends and fellow volunteers I have come to love, like Tim Goodnow from the Dog Soldiers of Atlanta. I also missed two - Corrie Ayers and Amy Overton - who had to leave before I could get to them. Sorry, Folks!

I took a tour with Charlie of the homes CBF is working on and has recently completed. What a miracle CBF has wrought in Pearlington! But Charlie finds himself in an interesting predicament. CBF needs volunteers! Charlie could start rebuilding four more houses - he has the resources - but needs volunteers to help lay piling foundations, get the framing done and the houses blacked in.
Remember: not everyone in your group has to be a skilled builder. We've even had older, retired people come just to guide and instruct others in how to do things. Please dig deep and help Charlie - and others - who have worked really hard to gather the resources but now need your help in getting it done.

Charlie and Dallas Trammel at her home-under-construction

If you can help, please contact Charlie immediately at 601-519-2785.

After Corrie Ayers' family, along with the Roberts and Lewis Families returned home to MN on Friday morning, Charlie awoke to find his vehicle festooned with goodbye notes and drawings from the young people. Karla Roberts also left this note:

"We have so enjoyed being here in Pearlington and serving with CBF. You have blessed us by finding lots of work for our multi-aged, multi-talented crew. Coming to serve with you this short week has done a lot to teach our children the value of serving God wholeheartedly through serving others who need a helping hand. May God continue to bless you richly."

By all reports, you folks did excellent work and we thank you!

David and Patty Baldwin, who were working out of the First Southern Baptist Church have ended their stint in Pearlington and have moved their headquarters to Gulfport. They did an amazing job in Pearlington and they will be sorely missed. The Parsonage at the church is still open and available for volunteers to be housed, to cook and look after themselves. All volunteers wishing to come through the Southern Baptist organization may now contact Charlie Holmes, who has taken over the Baldwin's outstanding projects. Charlie will make arrangements for you and be happy to task groups in various ongoing projects.

Charlie may be contacted at the number above. He is also available by email, although calling him directly is more reliable and timely. Charlie's email address is:

Jimmy Lamy is a local resident who is currently hosting a large group of Seventh Day Adventists from two locations. The Auburn Adventist Academy from Auburn, WA has sent 16 young people and 6 adults. They are spending a week in Pearlington doing everything from sheetrocking, to insulation, siding and painting. Yesterday, part of the group was at Larry Randall's house siding and painting.

Also, Jimmy is hosting two families from Portland, TN. One of these, Rod and Mary Schmitz came partly because they felt that reaching out in service might help alleviate some of the pain of the recent loss of their 20-year-old son in a car accident. This is the second child the Schmitz's have lost and they are a remarkable couple, firm in their faith, and doing what they can for others. Our hearts and prayers go out to them and we admire their dedication and willingness.

Thank you also Jimmy, for all you are doing to help your neighbors in Pearlington!

Lots more to come, so stay tuned....

A reflective Johanna, from Auburn, WA after a hard day's work.


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