After Christmas is over and a new year begins, we usually breathe a sigh of relief. Christmas is the most demanding and at the same time the most rewarding event for PCAM. This year was a little different for Harley and myself. We had discovered that several floor joists were rotted and broken under the little country church I pastor. Harley helped me and we sawed new floor joists on my sawmill to replace the bad ones. We were working under the church in the mud and cold getting the church in shape to have services once again. The floor was actually unsafe and with the Covid 19 raging we canceled services for a time.
On January11th I was to have carpal tunnel surgery and when we got to Lexington for my surgery Sue had chest pains and had to be taken to the Emergency Room. After the normal procedures like a heart cath and stress test she had to have a stint installed. After she got able I then had the surgery and as soon as I could I had the other hand done.
The first Sunday in April we were able to get back to having church. Most of the churches were having church on Facebook or having parking lot church. During the first week of April we also started clearing the trees for a place to build a much needed warehouse. We cut several trees and got them our of the way and then got a dozer to come and prepare the site for a concrete slab for the building. By the end of April we were ready for the concrete to be poured. It began to look like progress!
I worked a few days as a Bailiff but spent every day I could sawing lumber for the new warehouse. I don't have time to go into all the flat tires, dead batteries and other things we deal with from day to day. In early June we had our first group of volunteers to come to work on the warehouse. I was elated to see some wall going up, my desire was to get the building under roof before winter. The week after the volunteers left I was logging and was hit in the face with a tree limb. Again, I won't go into detail but had to have facial reconstruction because of all the bones in the left side of my face was shattered. Four different doctors at different times said it should have killed me. Needless to say, my construction slowed to a crawl. I did some sawing to finish enough floor joists for the next group of volunteers that were scheduled to come. We had our next group on June 20th. They didn't do much construction work but helped to get logs to the sawmill and saw them into lumber.
Once again, health problems presented themselves. The parts that were put in my face to support my left eye became infected and had to be removed. Due to the Covid problem I had to wait in the Emergency Room for 2 ½ days before an operating room came available. There wasn't any rooms available so they kept me waiting in the ER. Finally got the surgery and got to go home.
I had another group of volunteers to come in November and they did an amazing job, they got the floor joists on one-third of the building and got the sub-floor nailed down and was able to cover it with a tarp to get through the winter. They also put some wood on the walls that were standing. While they were doing construction the ladies that came with them were busy wrapping Christmas gifts for the children in the sponsorship program. Once again, we can't do this ministry without help.
I'm not really trying to break your heart, but that's not the end of my problems. When the group of volunteers were getting ready to leave, I went to show them a trail that would lead to the cliff line where they could see the beautiful fall colors. As I was walking back to my truck I stepped in a hole and broke my left leg. Spent four weeks in a cast and four weeks in a boot on crutches.
My desire is now to get the warehouse under roof before next winter. I also hope I don't have the same problems to deal with. I pray for the Lord to send more volunteers for the coming year.