Dear family and friends,
As I was thinking about what I could share in my monthly update, I received an e-mail from NTM Homes that gave a lot of statistics for this past year. I found it very interesting and thought that maybe you would appreciate a glimpse into our lives here as part of this missionary community.
At the end of 2013, there were 144 missionary retirees living here at NTM Homes. We had three folks who moved out of the independent duplexes and into our Latham Center during the year. Two moved into the Assisted Living wing of the building and one moved into the independent wing of the facility. They all began eating in the central dining room and enjoy “home cooked” meals that are prepared in our well equipped kitchen and served by our staff members here. Numbers vary, but at any given time, there are around 19 retired folks living in the Latham Center building.
There are 18 couples and 5 single ladies on staff here at The Homes. The numbers are a bit hard to define since there are some folks who don’t fit neatly into a particular category. Most staff members live here on the property, but a few live in the local Sanford area. For example, one staff lady is one of our drivers, driving folks to doctor’s appointments, medical tests, dentist visits, weekly Wal-Mart trips, etc. She is considered NTM Homes staff, but her husband is on Headquarters staff. (They live off of the property and she comes and goes depending on when she needs to be here.) I know that one particular resident appreciates having transportation to and from her dialysis appointments 3 days a week. Brad is full time Homes staff (finance office). On the other hand, since I, Wanda, teach at our school for missionary children, which is located on the New Tribes Mission Headquarters property, I am technically considered to be Headquarters staff. As you can see in the attached photo I often interact with the residents. I stopped by for the birthday party for this soon to be 90 year old resident. This lady is still living on her own in a duplex.
Twenty-eight older couples joined our team as volunteer workers this past year. Most of them stayed in some sort of Recreational Vehicle in the RV park here on our property. We are so very thankful for their labors of love as they painted, put down ceramic tiled floors, did wood working projects, worked on vehicles, poured cement, did electrical work, cleaned windows and rooms for residents, and did sewing projects for different ones here. There is no way I could list all of the things that these folks accomplished. They have been such a blessing to so many of us and we count it a privilege to work alongside of them.
Three retired couples who live here, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversaries sometime during the year 2013. Five residents were called home to be with the Lord in the 12 months of 2013. Spouses are making adjustments as they face life without their very dear one. Several of these put in some very difficult years as the main caregiver for a very ill husband or wife.
Three couples moved into duplexes here. Our maintenance staff did a fine job getting the two bedroom apartments ready for their new occupants. This included having a new coat of paint on all of the inside walls, installation of new kitchen cabinets and countertops, as well as wood laminate flooring or carpeting in the bedrooms and/or living room. The grounds crew spruced up the landscaping and the cement sidewalks and carport surfaces had a good scrubbing with the power washer. One of these couples has a daughter and son-in-law on staff here and another of the couples has a mother / mother-in-law who is living in the Latham Center.
During this past calendar year one of our NTM Homes staff members retired. She moved to Michigan to be closer to family members. Another staff member, went on Senior Status. This means that she no longer works in the nursing office 40 hours a week but works about half of those hours each week. This is still pretty amazing since she is now in the over 70 age group.
Hopefully this gives you an idea of some of the activities that are happening around here. It seems hard to believe that Brad and I have been here for three years already. (We moved in March of 2011.) We are here because this is where we feel God wants us to serve. We appreciate being part of a team ministering to the needs of our senior saints. These folks have given many years of their lives faithfully serving the One who has given His all for them. We are thankful for you. We know that many of you are praying for us. We know that our labor is not in vain. God has done so very much for us, how could we not serve Him?
By His grace,
Brad and Wanda Hull
P.S. Please realize that the numbers that I have included change so often, that there may be a number or two off here and there, depending on which month of the year a particular event happened. Missionaries move around a lot. J
That we will rejoice in the Lord as we go through our days
That we will seek Him and walk close to Him
God will give us His wisdom as we go about our daily tasks
For teacher and students as we finish up this school year