Friday, February 29, 2008

Holding on to Hope Women's Conference Happened

This time last week, Friday, February 22, excitement was in the air as Lagniappe's first women's conference began. Women from eight states and communities along the Gulf coast gathered for dinner and the opening session. Jean Larroux, pastor of Lagniappe greeted the women and we were on our way. The talented, lovely Teresa Sugar, Director of Women's Ministry at Christ Presbyterian in Nashville, TN, lead us in worship as we lifted our voices in praise to our God. Nancy Guthrie, our conference speaker, also a member of Christ Presbyterian in Nashville, TN got us going with some interesting questions that allowed us to get to know some about each other. Nancy moved quickly into the first teaching session as we looked at the life of Job. We were drawn into the opening chapters of Job as we heard of the suffering of Job, from the loss of his material possessions, to his children and then the physical suffering that came upon him. Nancy began to share in the context of Job's life and suffering, her own personal journey into suffering and loss. She was open and honest as she told us of her anguish and despair as she confronted the death of her daughter, Hope. Time and space does not permit me to write what is in my heart. You may listen to all three teaching sessions from the conference online or download them to your MP3/IPOD. I must confess I am a novice at "blogging" especially with pictures. I have no clue how this is going to look. I just wanted to get something on the blog about the conference. Stay alert for future pictures and postings regarding the women's conference. If you have pictures please send them so that we can share them. Thanks Nancy, Teresa and the great team from Christ Presbyterian in Nashville, TN, who tirelessly prayed and planned, came to Lagniappe so that women would be encouraged and blessed! We say "THANK YOU"!
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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

My school!!!!!

So....Furman students have turned out for three years running. Every spring break since the storm, at least 30 students from the beautiful liberal arts college in Greenville, South Carolina show up and help out. They've also contributed 4 interns (summer 06), one of which is now on permanent staff (that would be me :). Sometimes this dedication has amazing results. This week, the Furman students got an amazing surprise. THEY GET TO BLITZ BUILD A HOUSE!!!! Now, it's a relaxed blitz, but they arrived with subflooring, and right now the walls are framed up and trusses are on. Today they will finish the sheeting and begin painting the siding and potentially roofing. I really do have pictures, and those pictures will be up as soon as I can load them from the camera. It's fun to have my friends here; it's really fun to watch these liberal arts students ( who are less than skilled with a hammer :) frame up a house! Thank you RUF Furman (and other students who showed up on their own!)...your dedication and commitment to return mean a lot to all of us, and especially me :)

Sunday, February 24, 2008


"O Lord of hosts, how long wilt thou not have mercy upon Jerusalem? . . . And the Lord answered the angel . . . with good words and comfortable words."—Zechariah 1:12,13. What a sweet answer to an anxious enquiry! This night let us rejoice in it. O Zion, there are good things in store for thee; thy time of travail shall soon be over; thy children shall be brought forth; thy captivity shall end. Bear patiently the rod for a season, and under the darkness still trust in God, for His love burneth towards thee. God loves the church with a love too deep for human imagination: He loves her with all His infinite heart. Therefore let her sons be of good courage; she cannot be far from prosperity to whom God speaketh "good words and comfortable words." What these comfortable words are the prophet goes on to tell us: "I am jealous for Jerusalem and for Zion with a great jealousy." The Lord loves His church so much that He cannot bear that she should go astray to others; and when she has done so, He cannot endure that she should suffer too much or too heavily. He will not have his enemies afflict her: He is displeased with them because they increase her misery. When God seems most to leave His church, His heart is warm towards her. History shows that whenever God uses a rod to chasten His servants, He always breaks it afterwards, as if He loathed the rod which gave his children pain. "Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him." God hath not forgotten us because He smites—His blows are no evidences of want of love. If this is true of His church collectively, it is of necessity true also of each individual member. You may fear that the Lord has passed you by, but it is not so: He who counts the stars, and calls them by their names, is in no danger of forgetting His own children. He knows your case as thoroughly as if you were the only creature He ever made, or the only saint He ever loved. Approach Him and be at peace. (Spurgeon)

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Lagniappe Home Dedications

Another great joy we experience at Lagniappe is when a homeowner actually moves into their new Lagniappe home, and we get to have a home dedication to commit the work we have done to God's Glory! Shown above is Jean Larroux presenting a Bible to new homeowner Suzanne Howell, and to the right, a photo of some of the many people who had a hand in building her
Next, Andrew Thompson, construction leader, hands a Bible to new homeowners Bessie & Leon Russo. The Lagniappe staff and the Russo's then enjoy a laugh in their new kitchen.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A New Roof for the Tool Crib

Unbelievers, repent! The roof on the tool crib has been repaired, thanks to Reid Sabin and Ryn Lukacs, who worked tirelessly for a week! Photos were taken of Reid and Ryn on the roof to document this event, but were lost when my computer crashed, so I have no real evidence of WHO fixed the roof, but you have my WORD it was Reid and Ryn! Thanks for a job well done, and sorely needed!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Update - Holding on to Hope Conference

One week from today we will be greeting women from throughout the southeast and the coast, as they arrive for the Holding on to Hope women's conference. As of today we have 107 women attending. We are thrilled by the well written article that was published in today's Sun Herald. Go to and look for the heading Your Life and read the article. Actually, Jean's aunt prepared the article and is to be commended. For those that will be with us we look forward to seeing you soon, as the Lord wills.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Holding on to Hope Conference Update

The excitement is growing as the day approaches for our "Holding on to Hope" restoration work project and women's conference. We have women coming from Virginia, Tennessee, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi. As of this posting we have a total of 58 women registered. Thirty of those will be staying here at Lagniappe. As you can see there is room for you. Please go ahead and make your reservation and share in this extraordinary weekend with us. If you have any questions, please give me a call (Barbara Warner) at 228-467-3887

It All Adds Up

On January 23, 2008, eight homes were dedicated and ribbons were cut in Waveland, MS. Mission to Mississippi, a community effort from Wayland, MA partnered with Lagniappe Church in this project. The following was written and read by Kathie Steinberg at the ceremony. It really does all add up when communities and folks work together. Thanks Mission to Mississippi!

It All Adds Up

As we look at the four houses behind us on Combel St

803; 805; 807; and 809

And the two on Maple:

1015; 1017

And the two on Taranta

1204; 1206………

We ask “How did we get to these numbers?”

8/29/05 8:01 AM Category 3 172 mph winds

A 30 foot storm surge And 8 hours later……..

90,000 square miles of Mississippi damaged and destroyed;

46 million cubic yards of debris;

235,000 homes damaged and destroyed;

128,000 jobs lost.

50,000 volunteers responded including a small group from 01778.

They reached out to 39576, a small 6.8 square mile beach front community located 30 degrees North and 39 degrees West; 17 feet above sea level with 2730 households and just over 7100 residents,

And filled a 53 foot trailer with household items;

Fulfilled 208 Christmas wishes;

Planted 15 trees, 24 bushes and one memorial garden;

And brought 87 people to help rebuild 3 houses.

Yet, two years after the storm, over 16,000 people were still living in trailers. So, eight builders responded…..and thus began Mission to Mississippi.

8 builders;

404 skilled workers and subcontractors;

125 volunteers;

1252 contributors and 68 vendors donating

$1.6 million.

14 weeks starting at 6:15 AM, 10 hrs/day, 7 days/wk, 28,000 man hours;

3600 sandwiches 265 dozen donuts 1425 tootsie pops

5400 cups of coffee 365 trips to Walmart

785 cases of water, soda and Gatorade.

1653 Hotel nites 1800 trips to the Epic Buffet

4 boxes of bandaids 3 cans of bug spray 6 bottles of Rolaids

Only 2 trips to the ER and NO serious accidents.

3 sites, 8 green containers, 3 yellow trailers and 4 Handy Houses;

11 coolers, 3 tents, 7 tables;

2 lulls, 2 skidsters, 1 excavator, 1 flat bed, 1 pick up and 3 white vans……

And they only got stuck in a ditch 5 times.

86 windows 24 doors 16 toilets

8 thermostats 24 sinks 72 kitchen cabinets

16 tubs 136 pilings 96 light fixtures

174 drawer pulls 296 light switches

The families contributed 700 hours of sweat equity and provided encouragement and daily “thank yous.” They have waited 512 days…..

And so, when we add this all together ---- the builders, the workers, the volunteers, the donors and the contributors ---- eight families will enjoy

803; 805; 807; 809; 1015; 1017; 1204 and 1206.