Welcome Home: Friends gather, pray as Habitat dedicates new house in Brundidge

Published 3:00 am Tuesday, September 23, 2014

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Above top, Jennifer Roten (third from left) prays with friends and supporters during the blessing of the home at the dedication ceremony Saturday for Roten’s new home.

The mission statement of Habitat for Humanity says that the organization seeks to put God’s love into action by bringing people together to build homes, communities and hope.

This mission statement came alive Saturday morning at the dedication of a newly renovated Habitat home in Brundidge.

Jennifer Roten was selected as the new partner family to receive a home, located at 510 Caldwell Street. The home was originally built in 2008, and a partner family affected by hurricane Katrina resided in the home. Habitat for Humanity Board President Melissa Mikul said Habitat re-deeded the home when the family decided to move back to the coast, and volunteers have been working to renovate the home for a year.

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Roten said she was very grateful to Habitat for the home and for all the work volunteers put in to the project.

Roten comes to the new home after escaping an abusive relationship.

She said the new home was another step towards personal strength.

“It takes a lot to strengthen, but God had my back, I always believed He was there for me,” Roten said. “This is another step to build on. I’ve never lost my faith, this is part of His plan.”

At the dedication Nellie Sue Helms gave an opening prayer and the Rev. Ashley Davis performed the Blessing of the Home. Robert Cary presented Roten with a Bible for her new home. Roten signed a symbolic mortgage agreement and cut the ribbon on her new home before entering it for the first time.

New hardwood floors were one of the features of the home that Roten was most excited about. Her friend, Stephen Astemborski, installed them.

“I was trying to help her, I’ll help anyone that needs it,” Astemborski said. “It feels good to help those that need it.”

Board member John Dew gave the opening welcome during the ceremony.

Dew said that if he could sum up the emotions of dedicating the home into one word, it would be ‘thanksgiving’.

“So many people came together to make this happen, it is the best word to describe it.”