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New Habitat homeowner takes keys on Lee Street

Friday, September 28, 2012

Habitat for Humanity President Bob Beaver presents Angel Lukenbill the keys to her new home Thursday at 501 E. Lee St., where 40 friends and supporters congratulated her on the home's completion. The 26-year-old Nevada High School graduate has three children.
(James R. Campbell/Daily Mail)
Forty members and supporters of the Nevada Area Habitat for Humanity convened late Thursday afternoon at the new 501 E. Lee St. home of Angel Lukenbill and her three young children to ask God's blessings and welcome the family to the realm of Vernon County home owners.

The group enthusiastically sang "He's Got the Whole World in His Hand" before Lukenbill's pastor, the Rev. Chad Bailey of Pine Street Baptist Church, read verses one through seven of Psalm 112 and led a prayer beginning, "Gracious God, grant to this home the grace of your presence that you may be known to all who live here."

Then the crowd, assembled around the freshly painted walls and polished hardwood floor of the living room, answered, "Let the mighty power of God be present in this place and make it a secure home for all who live here."

Angel Lukenbill and her children accept gift quilts from the Nevada Area Habitat for Humanity Thursday afternoon in their new home at 501 E. Lee St. The children are, from left, Tierney Hess, 3, Breanna Hess, 6, and 8-year-old Trenton Hallam.
(James R. Campbell/Daily Mail)
Habitat President Robert "Bob" Beaver gave Lukenbill her house keys on a ring before gift quilts were presented to and ceremonially wrapped around the homeowner and her children, 3-year-old Tierney Hess, 6-year-old Breanna Hess and 8-year-old Trenton Hallam.

It is the 13th house that Habitat has renovated or built since the organization's 1993 inception, Beaver noted. Light refreshments were served.

Recognizing Nevada contractor Bill Erwin for laying the foundation and putting up the frame much faster than Habitat volunteers could have otherwise done it, Beaver drew applause upon giving Lukenbill the keys.

"We could not have done it in this time frame," said Beaver, a local real estate agent and former Nevada High School principal.

Lukenbill said after the 5:30 p.m. ceremony that her work as a certified medical technician for At Home Independence would not have allowed her to own a home at this point in her life. "It's exciting," said Lukenbill, 26, who plans to move in Saturday.

"I couldn't have done it without Habitat."

The 2004 Nevada High School graduate, daughter of Martin and Kathy Hallam of Nevada, aspires to become a social worker and is studying online for a bachelor's degree in sociology from the University of Phoenix. She has two brothers, Christopher and Edward, both of Nevada.

Lukenbill said her mortgage, requiring monthly payments of almost $400 per month, will be retired in 2032. The home is valued at $65,000.

In its 19 years of down-to-earth community altruism, the Nevada Area Habitat for Humanity has developed a traditional ceremony in which the participants sing, "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands," with one verse going, for example, "He's got the Lukenbill family in his hand. . ."

The ecumenical Christian organization invites a minister to read a Scripture and lead a prayer in which they take part by answering a series of declarations, the second of which Thursday had Bailey quoting Revelation 3:20, saying, "Behold, I stand at the door and knock, says the Lord. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come into the home."

The group's answer from Psalm 121:8 was, "The Lord shall watch over your going out and coming in from this time forth."

The ceremony started with Bailey quoting Psalm 127:1, "Unless the Lord build this house," answered by, "those who build it labor in vain."

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Kudo's to Habitat for Humanity, With more people seeing the DREAM of Home Ownership and commiting to the sweat equity program. This make's the person a lot more responsible for the offering of the prize. I want to hear more of the Community Support that made a dream become reality.

Great Job Habitat for Humanity.

SFC Mark D. Johnson

-- Posted by mark.johnson57 on Fri, Sep 28, 2012, at 8:43 AM

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