Habitat Affiliate Vice President Jon Suit called the gathering together. He introduced Fred and Carrie Jobe and their children, Dallas, C.J., Cheyenne, Tracy and Cassie, as the family for whom the new home was being built.
Stan Stanfield, the Missouri and Kansas coordinator for Thrivent Builds, spoke about the partnership between Thrivent Financial for Lutherans on a national level and Habitat for Humanity. The Thrivent Builds program will underwrite most of the costs for the newest Habitat house.
The partnership between Thrivent Builds and Habitat has resulted in the construction of 1,000 homes over the past three years. This year, Thrivent and Habitat are building 18 homes in Kansas and Missouri. In the past three years, 45 new homes have gone up in the territory Stanfield oversees.
Suit offered intoductions for a number of key figures in the latest undertaking, including construction supervisor Jim Copeland. All three members of the Monett City Council were present for the occasion. Recognition was extended to Dayton and Pearl Mackey for their financial assistance for the Habitat program.
Fifty studs for the home had been donated by Trinity Lutheran Church in Freistatt. Trinity Lutheran School students had written a Bible verse on each piece of lumber, offering a blessing to the family for years to come.
The ceremony for beginning a Habitat house involved having each of the Jobe children help drive a stake in the ground at the house's four corners. Then Suit invited all those present inside the cinder block walls of the house. Tall people were chosen to stand at the four corners, symbolizing posts for the structure. Others positioned themselves as windows. Several stood with arms extended to form an archway for the door.
The Jobe family gathered at the center with arms raised, symbolizing the framework of the roof. With that, the house had achieved a shape which the volumteers would complete. Gene Hall, pastor for the Jobe family at Closer Walk Christian Center, offered a prayer describing how love would build the house.
Hall noted how St. Lawrence Catholic Church had donated the land, Lutheran congregations provided the impetus for Thrivent and members from many congregations would provide the labor to complete the task.
Thrivent Financial local representative Matt Tichenor came forward to present the family with Thrivent hats, T-shirts and construction aprons for the "sweat equity" they would invest as part of the team building the house.
With that, the ceremony ended and work began. By the end of the first day, the crew had framed over the foundation blocks and laid two-by-fours for a floor, blocking in connections for the plumbing.
Construction efforts will continue on weekends. Those interested in participating can contact Judy Hudson at 417-235-6722.