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July 8, 2013

Press Photo

Thank You Oakview Baptist Church "Builders For Christ"

When browsing through the website noting all of the exciting things happening at Oakview Baptist Church in Okeechobee, Fla., you'll quickly see the heart of their ministry - "Impacting Eternity." That is exactly what the team called "Builders For Christ" did this past week at The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) in Graceville. A group of 24 volunteers, ranging in age from 11-70 plus, willingly gave up their summer vacation plans and activities to make a difference in the lives of our BCF students.

Oakview's heart for missions stems from their Senior Pastor John Garrison and his wife Amelia who served as missionaries for 10 years in Zambia, Africa. The Garrison's coordinated activities for the mission team in Graceville where Amelia and the cooking crew prepared meals and snacks, while John made sure projects were on schedule and completed. The "Builders For Christ" included woodworkers, teachers, college students, youth, home-makers, and other professionals who sacrificially gave of their time and energy and funded the trip to work on the campus. Together they built trusses, poured concrete, painted student housing, ripped out carpet, sanded down glue, and tiled the entranceway coming in Graceville Hall. They spent long hours constructing, staining, and clear coating bookcases to be used in the McRae Morrow Education Building. There is no way to fully estimate the tremendous benefits and resources saved by having the mission teams and volunteer groups working on the campus during the summer.

According to BCF Professor and Chair of the Teacher Education Division Susan Wegmann, BCF students Donovan Higgins and Chase Day joined the Okeechobee group each day for breakfast (7:30 a.m.), lunch (noon), and dinner (5:00 p.m.) providing music for their time of worship. Wegmann joined on the keyboard and Katie Ammons from Okeechobee played the bass guitar as the group had a special time of prayer and praise for God's great blessings. Wegmann shared her adventures of working with the "Builders For Christ" dry walling and completing an education building for a church two years ago. "We try to join them every time we can," stated Wegmann. "This was a sister church in Okeechobee and we lived across the street from John and Amelia, so they became our mentors, and friends in ministry."

The Oakview Baptist Church "Builders For Christ" that served in Graceville included: Noel Chandler, Louise Chandler, Patricia Lodge, Amelia Garrison, John Garrison, Cali Pearce, Kearstin Dorrance, Linda Boggs, Dan Boggs, Harold Hilliard, Becky Hilliard, Sarah Brewer, Stephanie Perera, Katie Ammons, Sharon White, Barbie Campbell, L. C. Fortner, Shawna McCullers, Sabina Perera, Andy Washburn, Linda Washburn, Steve Wegmann, BCF Professor Susan Wegmann, Pastor John Garrison, and special musicians and BCF students Donovan Higgins and Chase Day.

For more information about mission opportunities at The Baptist College of Florida, please contact 800-328-2660 ext. 460.