Building the Beloved Community
By Alison Sawyer, Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church
As part of Saint Andrew’s, Bryan 150th Celebration in 2017, the parish selected a special outreach to commemorate the Sesquicentennial year, and chose the Habitat for Humanity build project. This project was a special collaboration between the Faith in Action team, Habitat and Saint Andrew’s, working alongside the Alvarado family.
Local Bryan residents Richard and Susie Alvarado have worked and lived in Bryan for more than 20 years. They have moved often, constantly trying to find a decent, affordable rental unit with adequate space for their family of five.
Susie explained the importance of the home to their family.
“We want to provide a home for our three children, they’ll have room to grow, play and thrive. As they get older, they will have security as they decide what they want to do with their lives. Eventually, it will be handed down to them, so my husband and I can rest assured that they will always have a place to call home.”
After securing the $20,000 fundraising goal last fall, Saint Andrew’s Faith in Action team, partnering with Habitat for Humanity launched the building project in April 2018. Since April, the Saint Andrew’s project team helped on weekends with installing siding, flooring, painting, and landscaping.
Parish member Jim Kracht, who has worked on about seven Habitat houses, noted the impact of this outreach.
“It has been truly fun, and rewarding work — it all results in a house that’s full of love, for people who really deserve it.”
As the Alvarado family made a one more final move into their new four-bedroom, two bathroom Habitat home in early September, their dream became a reality. The home now provides the living and yard space they need, and they will be able to afford the mortgage payments.
The home was completed in late August, and the Alvarados, Habitat for Humanity staff, and Saint Andrew’s members and supporters gathered on Saturday, September 8, 2018 for a special blessing and dedication of the home.
“I am glad we had the opportunity to join Habitat for Humanity in restoring and raising up this family and this community,” said The Rev. Daryl T. Hay, Rector of Saint Andrew’s.
View the Habitat Build project video here.