Helping Hands help those in need

Helping Hands help those in need
By: Arnold Wyrick
Pope County, IL - Finding good help can sometimes be difficult, and finding workers who will work for free is virtually impossible.  But now if you're talking about the men, women, and children who take part in the Helping Hands Ministries.
And this week a group of them from First Baptist Church in Columbia, Illinois are helping out folks in Pope County.
" I think it's amazing.  I love coming out here and helping people, and sharing the word of God.  So I think it's pretty awesome," says Casey Mardirosian of Columbia.
She and her grandfather are just some of the more than fifty church members who are repainting, and refurbishing an old school house for the Brownfield Baptist Church.
"It's just knowing that I'm being able to help somebody.  And hopefully I'll get a chance to spread the gospel and maybe win somebody into Christ.  That would be the best thing for me," says Jeff Lane of Columbia.  Lane is on his second Helping Hands Ministries Mission.
A few miles down the road from the Brownfield Baptist Church, another crew is re-roofing the home of Ed Amelott.  Amelott was injured 16 years ago in a work related accident, and has been wheelchair bound since.
"I figured I had to do it, and I didn't know how I was going to do it.  So I was like I'll just wait.  I never knew organizations like this existed.  We come from the big city and up there nobody helps you out.  And down here we've had more help with everything.  It's great," Amelott said.
And even though the work is hot, and dirty, some of the kids taking part in the projects are feeling pretty good about their work.
"It feels good to be able to go up there and do that when you know he couldn't, and do something for another person.  So it does feel good," says Brett Rohlfing of Columbia.
The group will be in Pope County throughout the week.  Many of the adults taking part in this years Helping Hands Ministries took time off from their jobs in the Columbia area to help people in Pope County.