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8-12-15 The House that Generosity Built

by Michelle Hansen, IA-MO Conference Communication/Sabbath School Director


Just a week before completion, Larry and Debbie Zell, far right, pose with the volunteer crew that built their house. [Photo: Michelle Hansen]  

Larry and Debbie Zell needed a new house, and soon. Their mobile home was showing its age, yet they didn’t have the resources to purchase a new home or to have one built, but they did have land.
The Zells are members of the Ava, Mo. Seventh-day Adventist Church and for a number of years fellow members have helped fix up their mobile home. The helpful members, though, foresaw a day when repairs would no longer be enough. So, when the Zells asked for assistance again in the Spring of 2014, the church members knew they would have to look for a more permanent solution.
Back to the land the Zells owned. Larry and Debbie told the church board that they could sell some of it and use that money to buy materials to build a new house on their property, but they wouldn’t have any extra funds for labor costs. Well, the church members could supply the labor, the board decided and then the Zells would have a permanent and durable home.
In July of 2014 ground was broken and two months later, after the rain stopped, the foundation was poured. Retired Ava church members Eck Ulrich, Jim Porter, Ed Kennedy and Ray Hoffmaster selflessly devoted three days a week to building the house. They also received assistance from members Fred Perlee, Mel Cline and Ava pastor, Craigs Wiles, among others.
Larry and Debbie picked out the paint colors and counter tops, Larry’s family bought the appliances and before they knew it, they were in their new home by January, 2015. The Zells are extremely grateful for the generosity of their fellow church members and the crew couldn’t be happier with how the house turned out.

Michelle Hansen is the Communication/Sabbath School Departments Director in the Iowa-Missouri Conference

North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists
9705 Patuxent Woods Drive
Columbia, MD 21046-1565 USA
Telephone: 443-391-7200
Fax: 443-391-
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