Sometime ago a plan was formulated to have a “fly-build” project to erect a chapel in Samoa. The brethren there are very happy that this time has finally arrived! Unfortunately Br John Lausevic, director of the Welfare Department, is not able to carry this out due to some health problems, so Br Luke Kneebone was entrusted to take on this project.
On Sunday 9th June 2013 Br Luke, his wife Sr Jade and Josiah left Sydney for Samoa. Jade shared the following thoughts from their trip:
“Well we made it here safely. Flight went well, Josiah seems to love flying so that was good… unfortunately I forgot just how hot it actually gets over here. Poor little Josiah, he is constantly sweating, and I just can’t manage to keep him cool! Village life is much different when you have a little baby, and things like keeping mozzies away become much more important… Luke has been busy trying to organise everything for the church building so they can start construction next week, so I haven’t seen him much as he has been catching the bus into town everyday. But there are plenty of helpers here to help look after Josiah… Anyway for those of you who know the people from church here, all are well and excited that they will be getting a new church soon. Luke managed to get a data sim, so we will try to continue with the updates when possible. Love from Samoa – Luke, Jade and Josiah”
We are grateful and thankful to the Lord that “Stage 1” has now begun. Please pray for the success of this special project that it may be a blessing to the brethren there in Samoa; pray also that God will bless and give strength to all those who have sacrificed of their time and effort for the benefit of this work.
Another quote from Jade: “Br Alasdair Pow and Tim Wiseman arrived safely last night (18th June), but I think they are a bit stressed to see how much work actually needs to be accomplished in the next 10 days!”
Since then, Brother Madalin Duna also has gone over to Samoa to join the rest of the team and together with the Samoan brethren they are extremely busy levelling the ground, digging the trenches and preparing the steel for the foundations of the chapel.
Quote from Jade – Thursday 21 June 2013: “We are all still well over here in the land of Samoa! Construction is progressing slowly, but getting there, in Island time.”
Brother Matthias Thiel also joined them on Sunday 23 June and will be building a retaining wall and also helping with the concreting. God willing, the concrete will be poured on Wednesday 26th June 2013, making it all ready for “Stage 2” which will be taking place sometime in September this year.
Update Monday 24 June 2013: “Hi all from Samoa. Just thought I’d fill you in on our weekend over here. We all had a lovely Sabbath. Thanks to the Samoan government the guys can’t work before 8am or after 6pm, and are not allowed to work on Sundays. So we all had a lovely weekend, and managed to be tourists for half a day on Sunday! It was the first time any of us got a swim here in Samoa this trip. Josiah absolutely loved the water! Brother Matthias Thiel arrived last night from New Zealand and today work continues on the site although they are quite stressed as the work is progressing a bit slower than wished. Today they are working in the rain. Luke had to run into town again, so I am spending my 6 year wedding anniversary without him Oh well never mind. Only 1 ½ weeks to go and we’ll be coming back to freezing Sydney lol and then I’ll probably wish I was back here hahaha!!”
Update, Tuesday 25 June 2013
“Still managing…work going nicely despite monsoon type weather this morning. Workers still in good spirits but I think looking forward to getting home Hoping concrete will be poured tomorrow.” Jade Kneebone
Update, Wednesday 26 June 2013
“Well the concrete is being poured today despite the rain and thunder. Block work going good too.” Jade Kneebone
Update, Thursday 27 June 2013
“Well, all our fellow countrymen have left us here in Samoa now….Seems like Stage 1 of the project is nearly finished. Luke is just doing some tidying up bits and pieces, and sorting out stuff for stage 2 in September. I was tempted to fly back with the others this morning, but decided that I might as well stay for the last week and keep my husband company. Anyway, that’s all for now. Better try and get some sleep!”
If you would like to be a part of this special project and able to go over to help as a volunteer during ‘Stage 2’ you are welcome to contact Br Luke Kneebone on 0411 250 852 for more information. Your financial support is also always much appreciated; please send any donation to the treasurer of the Australasian Union Conference Office at Schofields. May God bless each cheerful giver!
Reported by Lidia Voncina, AUC Office