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Making McDuffie their Mission

Mission: McDuffie turned five years old this summer, and its purpose is the same as it's always been, transforming houses and changing lives.


Andrew Hamilton paints the trim on a house on Railroad Street in Thomson as part of the Mission: McDuffie effort.

More than 120 youth and adults painted and performed yard work at 16 homes across the county this week just because they wanted to help someone in need. The yearly project was the brainchild of Thomson First Baptist Minister of Students David Lambert.

"I think that it communicates to the homeowners and the community the love of God, and it communicates that churches care for the whole person," Rev. Lambert said. "...We care about the kind of life that they live and enjoy now. And if we can help them by doing something as simple as painting a house or trimming a bush, then we'll do that."

The project ends today, but in the meantime, homeowners are pleased with the results they've seen.

"It's wonderful. When you're unable to do it yourself, it's well appreciated." said Bill Mauldin, whose home received a fresh coat of paint. "...(The teenagers) are working like bees. It's good experience for them, and they're doing a jam-up job."


Alyssa Prater (right) and Allyson Snyder work together to put a fresh coat of paint on a home.

The kids participating in Mission: McDuffie said that being able to help others is what it's all about.

"I think it's good that we kind of get a first-hand experience of how some of these people live," said 14-year-old Meghann Dendler. "It's a chance for us to share Christ through our work and a chance for us to really get out there and be active in the community."

In addition to the work done during the day, kids and adults participate in worship rallies each evening. This year, The Potter's Mark provided the music. During each rally, team leaders recognize the hard work of specific participants from the day.

Usually, the event takes place in mid-July. With the short summer this year, leaders decided to shift to early June. Rev. Lambert said that helped as far as cooler weather but may have hurt participation.

Even though the number of participants was about the same as last year, Rev. Lambert said they were glad to lend a helping hand. He added that comparing before and after shots and hearing the comments of homeowners gives the participants a sense of accomplishment.


Carol Poss piles up recently trimmed branches.

"Some of the houses were really in desperate need of yard work and shrubs being trimmed, and I think some of them were amazed by the difference just trimming some bushes and cutting back some undergrowth can do to improve the way somebody's house looks," Rev. Lambert said.


Ben Dixon takes a hedge trimmer to some bushes at a home on Neals Mill Road.


David Bales braves a ladder to paint the top of a home.

Web posted on Thursday, June 8, 2006

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