Norwich Congregational Church Youth Group
Work Trip to Opelika, AL

April 16-25, 2004

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What are we doing?


During April vacation week (16-25 April 2004) we travelled from the greater Norwich, VT area to Opelika, AL to continue the rebuilding Union of Union Grove Missionary Baptist Church.


Our Itinerary

  • We met at the parking lot of the McDonald�s in West Lebanon at 6:30 on the morning of Friday, April 16. We travelled by bus to Richmond, VA, where we spent the night at St. John�s UCC (804-358-9291).
  • The next morning we travelled by bus to Opelika, AL. We are staying at the �Annex� of the Providence Baptist Church, a former parsonage. Our plan is to attend Sunday worship with the congregation of Union Grove, led by Pastor Daniel Wilborn.
  • We�ll work Monday through Friday, dividing into about six work teams, each with a mixture of talents and abilities. Each team will do a rotation of housekeeping and cooking jobs at the Annex.
  • As is our tradition, we�ve begun each day with Circle Time, a 10-15 minute period of reflection similar to a Quaker meeting.
  • Our hope is to take a half-day on Friday for sightseeing, swimming, or some other non-work distractions.
  • On Saturday, April 24 we get back on the bus and reverse our trip, again sleeping at St. John�s UCC in Richmond. We hope to arrive back in West Lebanon on Sunday evening, 25 April.


Contact Information

  • Providence Baptist Church Annex:
  • John Erickson�s cell (with us all the time):
  • Mary Huessy�s cell (with us all the time):
  • Work Trip Advisors' email (checked daily): mouseover button



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Friday, April 16th (Day 1)



Saturday, April 17th (Day 2)


Sunday, April 18th (Day 3)

Today we joined the people of Union Grove for morning worship. After service we checked out the job site for the first time. In the evening we were hosted by the youth group of Provedence Baptist for a BBQ and socializing!


Monday, April 19th (Day 4)

Our first day of work! We begin each day with teams waking early and making breakfast and lunch. On the job site we learned about hanging sheetrock (even ceilings!) and taping and "mudding" joints. In the evening we "ate in," with one of our teams making dinner.


Tuesday, April 20th (Day 5)

Today we focussed on hanging ceilings and finishing walls while we waited for mudding supplies to arrive. Everyone got into the act! In the evening the women's group from Provendence Baptist hosted us for a pot-luck dinner.


Wednesday, April 21th (Day 6)

Today was a busy day as teams sanded joints, applied second coats of "mud" and continued with ceilings.


Thursday, April 22th (Day 7)

What an amazing day! We began as we do every day with "Circle Time." Our strategy on the work site was to get most of the mudding and taping done, finish the ceilings in the back, finish the walls around the alter, and do as much as we could replacing the panels (and improving the joint) on the peak of the sanctuary. We did it all (and Harper even finished his closet)! Tomorrow we'll have a bit of rocking and clean-up before we head to a local state park.


Friday, April 23th (Day 8)

The last (half) day on the job! Today we finished various mudding jobs, walled-in the bapistry behind the alter and finished the peak of the santuary. We then cleaned everything (the Union Grove folks hope to have a worship in the church soon) and took pictures. We spent the rest of the day at Chewlaca state park, where we played and had a BBQ of our own.


Saturday, April 24th (Day 9)










Sunday, April 25th (Day 10)











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