Local News

Volunteer Carpenters Building Church In Four Oaks

Posted June 14, 2004 2:51 a.m. EDT

— According to the Bible, God created the world in six days. A group of missionaries hopes to build a Johnston County church in about the same amount of time.

The ceiling and walls are unfinished, but the congregation of Cornerstone Baptist Church in Four Oaks is worshipping there anyway.

"I am so excited that I'm holding back tears," The Rev. J.T. Mercado said.

Mercado is excited because the church finally has a facility of its own.

"These folks have been moving around from here to there for four years," Mercado said.

After just three days of work, their new church is nearly complete thanks to 90 volunteers with a group called Carpenters For Christ.

"We just love the Lord and wanna give back," volunteer carpenter Mike Homnaker said.

The carpenters come from all over the country. Every June, the group travels to a community to spend one week building a church.

"This is our vacation, our time to get together with brothers of Christ we don't get to see," Honaker said.

The carpenters are building the church from the ground up -- from pouring concrete to making sure every stud is exactly where it is supposed to be. Not all of these men are carpenters by trade.

"We're car salesmen, lawyers, CPAs -- just all different walks of life and sometimes this is the only time of year they may swing a hammer," Honaker said.

"It's just amazing what these men have done," Mercado said.

It is a job that has given the members of Cornerstone Baptist a place they can call their own.

Monday, carpenters will start laying bricks and nailing down shingles. They are scheduled to finish nearly all of the construction, except the electrical work, by Thursday.