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Hammers Hearts and Hands: November, 2017

07 December

Just a few days ago, as the sun was beginning to fall in the western sky, I found myself racing against the clock to make some progress on an important outdoor project, attempting to complete this work before the onset of winter. With saw and hammer, I set my focus upon the task of completing some simple framing, but in the process I inadvertently nailed several boards in an improper location.

Despite all the years of accumulating knowledge and experience in this field and despite my intention of doing a good job, I had done something that I’m never proud of doing. I had made a mistake.

Believe me, I am more than qualified to make that statement. I’ve made innumerable mistakes over the years of my life, and my dossier of mistake-making is more extensive than I am happy to admit. I’ve made mistakes in judgement, logic, and perception. I’ve made errors in decision-making, listening, speaking, and doing. I seriously doubt that there’s even one aspect of my life into which mistake-making hasn’t insidiously entered.

When I was a young man, I probably would have taken a sledgehammer to the framing mistake, demolishing what I had to work with, and leaving no alternative but to start all over again. That’s a human option, but it’s expensive. I’m not young anymore. My hands didn’t reach for a sledgehammer, but instead they picked up a tool called a “cat’s paw”, designed to discretely retract an embedded nail without causing too much damage to the overall work. Carefully, I applied the physics of this tool to my framing error and in a few well-spent minutes I was able to undo the wrong I had done without being destructive.

2000 years ago, a little baby boy was born to an unmarried and bewildered couple in a town called Bethlehem of Judea, half-way around the world from the region we call home. His newly born body was swaddled in long strips of cloth and placed in a borrowed, crudely built manger as His family had no proper cradletoputintouse. Thirty-three years later His scourged and flesh-torn body,now dead,would be removed from a Roman cross of crucifixion, wrapped in long strips of cloth again, and placed in a borrowed grave.

Without God’s grace, the life of Jesus, from birth to death, would arguably be just another sad portrait of a life riddled with the results of mistakes that have always plagued the human race. With God’s grace, however, His life becomes the miracle of salvation and the emblem for all true human progress. Jesus is the instrument, the tool, of divine grace that God sent into the world to repair all the mistakes we make without making things worse. Jesus is the personification of God’s grace in this world. He is the living incarnation of God’s will, not to condemn but to correct, to build rather than demolish, to be constructive instead of destructive.

Our world is self-destructing under the sledgehammer swing of pride, hostility, hatred, terrorism, violence, senselessness, bigotry, judgmentalism, and meanness. We are hurting one another, hurting the human race, hurting God, and hurting the cause of the Christ whom God sent into the world to save. Our pride and arrogance have grown large and heavy like the head of a 20-pound sledge and we ignore the delicate utility of the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, God’s “cat’s-paw” in the Divine Builder’s Toolbox.

Nearly 28 years ago, Hosanna Industries was born to be an instrument of grace in God’s world. The mission has never known a day since its beginning on which destructiveness could not have prevailed. But we were and are called by Christ to be constructive, to build rather than destroy, to help rather than to hurt, to heal rather than injure. We have been invited to share in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and what a year of grace this has been! Since last Christmas, the mission’s service log reports that we have been privileged to help 161 needy households, work with 1675 volunteers, and use all of the gifts generously given to build more than two million dollars worth of equity in this world. We have made blunders, errors, mistakes in various ways, but God’s grace has been sufficient in correcting the way without condemning the work. God’s grace always prevails if we allow it to work.

Very soon, the Holiday Season will be upon us once more. For a little while, the world will be full of the signs of Christmastime. Lights, decorations, trees, presents, parties, carols and candles will ornament our experience, but will we grasp the profound and transforming meaning of it all? Sledgehammers work, if demolition is what you are aiming to do. But must we behave with demolition in mind? Isn’t there a better alternative? Christmas means there is a better alternative and its name is Grace in the person of Jesus.

With this newsletter, you will find enclosed our traditional Christmas present to you, dear friend. It’s another Hosanna hand-made Christmas tree ornament, our 24th in a row, this one made by Amy out of the same kind of canning lid that the mission has used for many years in harvesting God’s produce from the garden and in processing thousands of jars of good food for hungry people. I hope you enjoy it as you include it in your Christmas decorations this year. We give this little gift to you with all the grace we have been given, reminding you as well as ourselves that Christmas is always a choice, because Christ is always the most important choice a person can ever make. This Christmas, choose Christ. Choose His ways of love and forgiveness, peace and reconciliation. Give Christ a chance to correct rather than condemn. You will be amazed at what the Master Carpenter can do if you let Him carefully do His work. Perhaps as you light a candle this Christmas Eve, please know from the bottom of Hosanna’s heart, how very grateful we are for you and for all that you do to help us carry on in our work. Please continue to pray for us, remembering the worth of God’s grace in this world, His grace made known to the world in and through your own precious life, and sing with your voice of faith together with God’s children everywhere:

Silent night, Holy night, Son of God, Love’s Pure Light!
Radiant beams from Thy Holy Face,With the dawn of redeeming Grace, Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth, Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth!

Love and grace to you with unending gratitude, dear Hosanna friend, this Season and always,

DDE

Read more in our 2017 November Newsletter.

TOP TEN things you can do TODAY (Giving Tuesday) to give back

24 November

Today is Giving Tuesday, and in the spirit of giving, we came up with a TOP TEN list of ways to give back through Hosanna Industries. These are simple things you can do right now.

 

 

  1. Say a prayer or two! Pray for the people crying out, “Hosanna, rescue me now, Lord!”
  2. Donate online or mail a check.
  3. Like us on Facebook, share our pages with your friends, or rate us on Facebook.
  4. Write a review about your experience with us on Network for Good, which will help us to receive more support.
  5. Register for our metal-working class to make a handmade Christmas gift.
  6. Sign up to deliver Christmas gifts to a household that we’ve helped this year.
  7. Start collecting spare change. Every penny, nickel, dime, quarter, dollar, etc. makes a difference!
  8. Sign up (at the bottom of our website) for our e-blast to stay in the loop about our work.
  9. Shop like you normally would at Amazon.com (or Amazon Prime) but use Smile.Amazon.com instead, & .5% of every purchase will benefit the mission, with no extra charge to you.
  10. While you’re out running errands, grab something extra. Here’s our wish list: 

Thanks for your support & Merry Christmas!

Perks to Pray and Play: Mihelic’s Shop ‘n Save

10 April

Perks to Pray and Play is a rebate program available at the four Mihelic Shop ‘n Save locations where they allow customers to Register your existing Perks card under Hosanna Industries. As you shop, they track your purchases by your Shop ‘n Save card. Then they give 2% of qualified purchases in gift cards to Hosanna Industries.

Example: If you register your Perks card with this program & spend $500 a month on groceries at any of the four Mihelic Shop ‘n Save stores, $10 a month in gift cards will be donated to Hosanna Industries from Shop ‘n Save.

This program doesn’t affect your regular gas perks that you get & it doesn’t cost anything.  The more people that choose Hosanna Industries as their Perks to Pray and Play recipient & shop at one of the four Mihelic Shop ‘n Save locations, the more gift cards will be gifted to the mission.

Four Mihelic Shop ‘n Save locations:

  1. Glenshaw Shop ‘n Save
    917 Butler Street
    Pittsburgh, PA 15223
    (412) 487-1460
  2. Pines Plaza Shop ‘n Save
    1130 Perry Highway
    Pittsburgh, PA 15237
    (412) 367-5115
  3. Rochester Road Shop ‘n Save
    814 Rochester Road
    Pittsburgh, PA 15229
    (412) 931-0743
  4. Richland Mall Shop ‘n Save
    5375 William Flynn Highway
    Gibsonia, PA 15044
    (724) 443-8420

To register your Perks card & choose Hosanna Industries as your charity recipient:

  1. Complete this form & bring it into one of the four stores listed above.
  2. If you do not already have a Shop ‘n Save Perks card, you can simply stop by the service desk in one of these stores & an employee will gladly get you taken care of & registered for our Perks to Pray and Play program.

Hosanna Industries Raising $1.5 Million for West Virginia Flood Relief

12 July

Hosanna Industries is planning multiple trips to the Richwood community of Nicholas County, West Virginia.  Plans include building 15 new homes for impoverished households that lost their homes to the flood, repairing 30 homes with new drywall, electrical, insulation, etc., providing 30 furnaces and 50 hot water tanks, as well as other household appliances, miscellaneous household items and tools.  Hosanna plans to refurbish an industrial building in the community for housing volunteers, storing materials, feeding people, etc.  Total costs are around $1.5 million, all of which will be provided through donations.

Richwood, WV has a poverty rate of 46%, according to the Nicholas County Community Foundation, and many are recently unemployed due to the coal mining operations being shut down.



Donate online via credit cardOR

mail a check payable to Hosanna Industries to 109 Rinard Lane, Rochester, PA 15074.  Mark gifts “West Virginia,” and all gifts received will go toward rebuilding efforts there.

Contact Amanda with any questions, or if you would like to set up a donation drive.

West Virginia Flood Relief Hosanna Industries

 

On Saturday, July 9, Hosanna Industries flew to WV to determine the needs, and how we could help. We flew in the plane donated from a friend of the mission 5 years ago. This plane was donated for just this purpose, and we are grateful for the gift.

On Saturday, July 9, Hosanna Industries flew to WV to determine the needs, and how we could help. We flew in the plane donated from a friend of the mission 5 years ago. This plane was donated for just this purpose, and we are grateful for the gift.

Richwood WV

Richwood, WV has been devastated by the recent flooding, and has left people in the community living in tents or camper trailers.


 

Hosanna Industries planning West Virginia relief

30 June

HOSANNA INDUSTRIES PLANNING WEST VIRGINIA RELIEF

Charity fundraising and organizing to rebuild for impoverished households after recent flooding

 

Hosanna Industries is exploring opportunities to help relieve the horrible suffering that has resulted from the catastrophic flooding last week in West Virginia.  The mission is currently investigating possibilities and developing key relationships with local people of faith who are influential in their communities.  We will shortly be sending ambassadors to the area to identify particular needs.

Current needs:

  1. Please uphold the mission in prayer as Hosanna Industries discerns the directions we believe the Lord is leading, and please remember all of the people in the Southeastern WV region who have suffered so gravely.
  2. Donate online towards Hosanna Industries’  future work in West Virginia mail a check to 109 Rinard Lane, Rochester, PA 15074.  Mark gifts “West Virginia,” and all gifts received will go toward rebuilding efforts there.
  3. Contact Hosanna Industries (724-770-0262) if you know of anyone who was underinsured or living in poverty and was affected by the recent flooding in West Virginia.

Hosanna Industries travels to areas of disaster to help with the mobilizing of large groups of volunteers to build and repair homes damaged by tornadoes, hurricanes, flooding, or other catastrophic events to bring hope and restoration to hurting individuals and communities.  In 2005, we assisted over 500 households with rebuilding efforts after Hurricane Ivan flooded parts of the Pittsburgh region.  Hosanna Industries has done work after multiple disasters, including Hurricanes Andrew, Floyd and Katrina, among others.

Media and Fundraising Contact: Amanda M. Becker

About Hosanna Industries: Hosanna Industries was founded in 1990 as a faith-rooted, non-profit mission whose work involves a variety of charitable initiatives aimed at helping our impoverished neighbors.  By the grace of God and through the mechanical and aesthetic arts, mission workers at Hosanna Industries build and repair homes for needy households; teach and lead classes and workshops in art, nature and spirituality; and train young people in construction skills.  Its typical single client household last year had an income of less than $20,000 a year. Since its founding in 1990 Hosanna Industries has provided around $52 million worth of charitable work to the community for around $15 million.  It depends on the generosity of others to complete its work.

Holy Week Blitz Build 2016

12 March

BLITZ BUILD PROVIDES NEW HOME

Hosanna Industries to construct house in four days

What: Alexa and Jim, in Sandy Lake, Mercer County, will have a brand new home that is handicap accessible, where their trailer with rotting floors once stood. Due to Alexa’s health conditions, she will soon be wheelchair-bound and unable to navigate in their trailer. Hosanna Industries intends to build their home as a “blitz build”.

How: Hosanna Industries’ “blitz builds” are made possible with volunteer labor, donated and discounted materials and a uniquely organized building method which compresses the length of construction to four days. The house will be built and move-in ready; complete with furniture and appliances by the fourth day.

When: Foundation will be laid and walls will be built by Hosanna Industries staff and volunteers prior to the blitz week. Work will begin at 8am on Monday, March 21, Holy Week, and the house will be complete by Maundy Thursday, March 24. On Thursday, March 24 at 2pm, Hosanna will host a dedication of the home which is open to the public.

Who: Hosanna Industries’ staff of nine will lead the build, and approximately 60 volunteers from Illinois and Virginia who were previously scheduled with Hosanna, will assist all week. The First Presbyterian Church of Bakerstown will also assist, as well as Mars National Bank.

Current needs:

  • Nearly $10,000 is still needed. Donate online or mail a check to “blitz build” 109 Rinard Lane, Rochester, PA 15074
  • Discounted or donated building materials

Rev. Dr. Donn Ed, founder and executive director of Hosanna Industries, said, “We are grateful for this Holy Week opportunity to provide new hope for another needy family in the name of the Carpenter of Nazareth who provided new hope for the whole world because of the events of the first Holy Week that happened 2000 years ago.”

Media and Fundraising Contact: Amanda Becker