We’ve come to the end of another SOWER project and now that I’ve shared about all the interesting sights in the area – like the World’s Largest Ball of Twine and the Barbwire Museum, I guess it’s about time I shared how we spent our working days.
Let me say this – we stayed plenty busy! Stream of God Ministries recently relocated to this small Kansas town after their ministry efforts into Mexico became too dangerous to pursue. As they searched for a new location – their vision being to start an International Bible College (via the internet) and also reach their community with a summer camp program – they were offered a no-longer-used school and adjoining property in Central Kansas. As Ralph, the director, said, it wasn’t exactly the area they were thinking of, but believing that God was leading them there, they jumped in with gusto! The school itself is quite unique – an 8 sided building with the gymnasium located in the middle.
Ralph and a variety of volunteers have been working hard to transform the building (in good shape, but definitely has that institutional/school look and feel) into an inviting ministry center. Dividing walls have come down to make a chapel and a dining hall, hallway walls have come down to allow rebuilding with windows and more open areas. I’m happy to report that we have had nothing to do with the “walls coming down” part. Because to go from this
is a little more muscle power than us old folks signed up for!
Instead we focused on the “building back up” process!
Here’s the chapel when we arrived. The dividing wall had been removed (leaving quite a gap in the carpet) and the wiring had been done for new lighting. By the time we left, the lights had been installed, the carpet patched and the walls had been painted all the same color.
Our first day –
Gary working on the lights –
Gorlyn working on the carpeting –
and Ruthie and I cleaning up the windows.
This was taken before the painting was done (the brown wall is now white), but I think it looks pretty darn good!
Gary also tackled getting all the heaters up and running –
and then I got to go around and clean them and put in filters.
Gary also redid the electric in the areas where the walls had been knocked down and wired up the new office that had been studded in (after he installed the windows.) 🙂
I think it’s just about ready for the sheetrock! Gotta save something for the next group, right?!
Here’s Gorlyn working hard on the painting. He had just enough paint to do all the walls (that needed doing!).
Ruthie and I kept busy being the extra set of hands for whatever project was up that day –
From pulling nails
to helping to hang a chandelier!
With Gary as our fearless leader much was accomplished. But the reality is there is lots and lots and lots yet to do! Ralph has a wonderful drawing of the completed property – with gazebos, a pond, a pool with a giant water slide (he already has the slide!), but for now it’s one day at a time. One wall down, one wall up. One more trip to the Habitat Re-Store to see what else might be of use at the school. We’ll be keeping this ministry in our prayers – and we’ll be sure to stop by next time we’re driving through Kansas to see just how things are coming along!
So what’s next for the Conrads? Well, our next scheduled project is Oakridge Retreat Center in Anadarko, Oklahoma. It’s one of our newer projects and we will be the first SOWERs to serve there. No pressure. Right. But before we head to Oklahoma we’re heading to Wilson Lake for a nice long weekend of some peaceful R&R.
Guess what? There are more pictures of the project HERE! You knew there would be, right? 🙂