Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Praises Pa. church members for aiding Habitat for Humanity

To the editor:

How wonderful to have seven people arrive at the Habitat for Humanity building site on Garfield Avenue in Florence and volunteer to help build the house there.

On Monday, July 29, seven members of Christ Covenant Church from Harleysville, Pa., stepped out of their white van, dressed in their work clothes with tools in hand, and went to work on the house. The men climbed up on the roof and began to install the roofing, while the four women followed the instructions of Chris Quinn, the Habitat site supervisor, and began installing and taping the rigid insulation in the house interior to help make the home energy-efficient.

This is the fifth year that this group has driven all the way from Pennsylvania to our Pioneer Valley to spend a week helping to build a house for a low-income family. Elizabeth Bridgewater, the new director of this area’s chapter of Habitat for Humanity, has been negotiating the details with Pam LaTorre, the group’s leader since March. When Elizabeth learned that the group loves to come to this area because it has such good ice cream, she was pleased to spend some evenings introducing them to flavors they hadn’t yet tried — a tasty reward for their five long days of hot, hard work.

Hosted by the South Congregational Church in Amherst, the Pennsylvania group has a mission to give service to other people as a part of their spiritual life. They have also traveled to other parts of the country to help other communities, including a Native American reservation and a rural Appalachian town. They were a happy, upbeat and hardworking group, as well as extremely generous with their time and expertise. They joined other Habitat volunteers and the future homeowner, along with donors of the land and materials, to build one more safe, decent, affordable home for a low-income family from our area.

Marybeth Bridegam

Amherst

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