St. Paul’s High School Mission Youth Team Travels from Bedford to Nicholas County, West Virginia

The St. Paul’s team poses in front of Summersville Lake. Front row L to R: Amy McGlothlin, Nate Presti, Mason Schalick, Sonia Presti, Emi McSwain, Emily Mitchell. Back row L to R: Helen Pulizzi, Amy Martin, Ian MacPhee, Hannah Wait, Ethan Schalick, Cooper Wait, John Mitchell, Natalie Schalick, John MacPhee - Courtesy photo (c) John MacPhee 2015 all rights reserved
The St. Paul’s team poses in front of Summersville Lake. Front row L to R: Amy McGlothlin, Nate Presti, Mason Schalick, Sonia Presti, Emi McSwain, Emily Mitchell. Back row L to R: Helen Pulizzi, Amy Martin, Ian MacPhee, Hannah Wait, Ethan Schalick, Cooper Wait, John Mitchell, Natalie Schalick, John MacPhee – Courtesy photo (c) John MacPhee 2015 all rights reserved

Submitted by the St. Paul’s Episcopal Church High School Youth Mission Team

Van 1 puts some finishing touches on their tin roof. From left: Emi McSwain, Amy McGlothlin, Nate Presti, John MacPhee, and Hannah Wait - Courtesy image (c) John MacPhee, 2015 all rights reserved
Van 1 puts some finishing touches on their tin roof. From left: Emi McSwain, Amy McGlothlin, Nate Presti, John MacPhee, and Hannah Wait – Courtesy image (c) John MacPhee, 2015 all rights reserved

This past Saturday, members of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church’s high school youth mission team returned from a week of home repair and construction work with Appalachia Service Project (ASP). Working in Nicholas County, West Virginia, the team made a strong contribution to ASP’s mission to make homes warmer, safer, and drier.

The St. Paul’s team was divided into two work crews of seven to eight members each (two adults and five to six youth per team). Volunteers spent their days on site with their work crews, and in the evenings regrouped with the other teams at the group center for dinner and social time.

Van 1, led by John MacPhee and Amy McGlothlin, worked on a mobile home in need of both interior and exterior work. The crew installed new flooring in the kitchen and dining room, additional support joists in the living room floor, and new ceiling panels in the living room and kitchen. Outside, the team installed a tin roof on a portion of the home. Youth in the Van 1 crew were Ian MacPhee, Emily McSwain, Nate Presti, Helen Pulizzi, Ethan Schalick, and Hannah Wait.

Van 2, led by John and Emily Mitchell, became the Roof Squad, installing tin roofing on one side of their home site, and SBS rolled roofing on the other side. Crew members also demolished a rotted porch and installed insulation and sheetrock on a renovated interior room. Roof Squad youth were Amy Martin, Sonia Presti, Mason Schalick, Natalie Schalick, and Cooper Wait.

Click on each panel to see the full-sized image and to read its caption

Team members, who ranged in age from 14 to 18, learned how to operate power drills, circular saws, Sawzalls, and power nippers over the course of the week. Although the work was physically difficult, all the volunteers expressed great satisfaction with their successful projects: removing an unsafe porch with pry bars, hammers, and sheer brute strength, for example, was an empowering experience.

Working in Nicholas County exposed the team to living conditions that most had never seen before: the Van 2 site, for example, had no running water in the home. Even in such difficult living conditions, however, the volunteers saw beauty and community, in the neighbors who frequently stopped by to check in and say hello, and the small vegetable garden carefully maintained in the side yard.

One of the highlights of the week for the crew was the traditional Thursday night picnic, when all the volunteers and many of the families they served gathered at a nearby park and picnic area for a cookout. Nearly all of the St. Paul’s crew took advantage of the opportunity for cliff jumping: leaping from a rock outcropping about ten feet up from the warm, deep waters of Summersville Lake. It was a beautiful way to cool off after a long week of hot outdoor work.

Plans for the next St. Paul’s ASP trip are already in the works: the parish expects this trip to become at least a biannual event for the foreseeable future.

To learn more about Appalachia Service Project or to make a donation, visit www.asphome.org.

Nate Presti takes a flying leap off a rock ledge into Summersville Lake, as Ethan Schalick, Amy Martin, and Ian MacPhee look on. Courtesy photo (c) Emily Mitchell, 2015 all rights reserved
Nate Presti takes a flying leap off a rock ledge into Summersville Lake, as Ethan Schalick, Amy Martin, and Ian MacPhee look on. Courtesy photo (c) Emily Mitchell, 2015 all rights reserved

 

 


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