June 22, 2014

Lessons from Henry the Eighth

Woodland 2014 HANDS Team:

It is a little known fact that when old roofers get together at the end of hot week of roofing and share some brie and a fine French red, they love to tell the same historical anecdote.  They love to recall that when Henry the Eighth formed the Church of England for less than noble purposes (he wanted to divorce one woman after another so that he could marry yet another) not all of the parishes of England agreed.  Henry's not so subtle response, they will tell you, was to imprison and sometimes execute the priests and then order his army to destroy the churches and cathedrals that chose to remain loyally Catholic.  At that point in the story the old roofers chuckle and ask the young people around the table how you would destroy a stone cathedral that took 100 years to build.  The answer was a simple one.  You chop holes in the roof, post a royal decree forbidding any repairs and then you let water destroy what man has built.  It was a very successful, low tech formula they tell you because few things are more destructive to a building than uncontrolled water.

The Nicaragua Christian Academy of Matagalpa is a simple and beautiful building built into the side of a significantly steep hill.  It is also located in a country that has a significant rainy season.  When our team was here last year, we saw first hand that drainage was a problem for the school that had not been perfectly solved.  In the year since we left, many water control measures have been put in place, but not everything was finished.  As our pictures attest, half of our team has been digging down to the foundation of the school and sealing the wall and footings because water has been making its way into the one year old classrooms.  It has been heavy work,  and as any old roofer (and one corrupt old king of England) will tell you very important work.

Today was day 5 of our trip.  We started the day worshipping with a Spanish evangelical church a few blocks from our guest house, and then we spent the afternoon hiking incredible mountain trails north of the city.  We continue to be in good spirits and mostly good health and we look forward to returning to work early tomorrow morning.


Jun 22, 2014 at 9:01 pm

Thanks for the updates. Any pictures to share with us? Tell Derrick his mama would like to see some pictures. :) I love pictures...

Jun 22, 2014 at 10:59 pm

Thanks for the update from the old roofer! Praying for those who are struggling with health issues.

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