What a week this has been! During the extreme weather conditions so many were without power and/or water, and some are still having to boil drinking water. Damage is becoming evident as pipes thaw, pumps and motors remain silent, and water stands where water should not be. The fellowship of Martin rose once again to the challenge as you provided sanctuary for those in need, inviting and sheltering those who were cold, delivering food, water, wood and prescriptions to those who could not or should not get out. Among the lessons of 2020 was that, as much as we love gathering within its walls, the church is not the building. It never has been; it never should be. In 2021 we affirmed the church is the Body of Christ, the disciples, the people, YOU.

Our church campus fell victim to the freezing temperatures after it was among the first wave to lose power. Chris was so good about checking the building and on Monday all was fine. However, when he arrived on Tuesday he discovered in the Movie Room a blown sprinkler head for the fire suppression system. Water had flooded the majority of Son City and all of Soul Food. Every effort was made to cut off the water supply, including requests to the city to unlock and shut off the main. Unfortunately, they were not able to respond to our request before there were additional compromised pipes in the attic space that flooded the remainder of the Vastine Building.

Chris has been a rock star in dealing with this mess over the last few days, and he provided the following information after a thorough inspection and conversation with our insurance agent and adjuster that I would like to share with you:

  • Electricity has been on since Thursday morning with no (as far as we know) additional outages.
  • Water is off for the entire campus, including Coble House and Beacon House, and will be for at least a few more days.
  • Building A – no apparent damages or frozen pipes. Will have to check outside faucets when water service is restored.
  • Building B – one toilet in the men’s restroom was still frozen when the water was turned off yesterday. Will have to evaluate that and outside faucets when water service is restored.
  • Sanctuary – sink in the sacristy was frozen when water was turned off yesterday. Will have to evaluate that and outside faucets when water service is restored.
  • Coble House – all inside fixtures were fine when water was turned off. Will have to evaluate outside fixtures when water service is restored.
  • The outside water fountain by the basketball court froze and busted a pipe. We are not sure where it gets its water supply. It was still running after all meters were shut off. Our plumber came out and shut it off at the fountain.
  • Beacon House – The water was already off.
  • We will probably look at restoring water service in Building A, B, sanctuary, Beacon House and Coble House early next week.

Now… Building C…
  • There are at least 5 broken pipes; in C1 (nursery) and C3 (Robin), in C4 (Caleb), a ruptured sprinkler head in C18 (movie room) and a broken 2” pipe for the “Dry” sprinkler system in the electrical/phone room at the top of the stairs.
  • The building was flooded in all areas from the east doors (by the steps) to just past the restrooms in Son City, so virtually 85-90% of the building.
  • Chris has been in touch with our insurance broker, the insurance company administrator, our adjuster, the restoration company (ServPro) and our plumber.
  • The adjuster will be contacting us soon for a walk-through. 
  • ServPro has been out. They will start work tomorrow sometime on water abatement and some tear out.
  • We are on our plumber's list for repairs to the plumbing.
  • Once the plumbing repairs are completed, we will look at turning the water back on the Building C and evaluating for any additional issues, including outside faucets.
  • Sprinkler repairs are pending. There is a shortage of parts for the foreseeable future.
  • Our adjuster has determined that demolition is the most important part right now. We need to get the water out of the sheetrock (and carpet but, most importantly, the sheetrock). However, he said after the demolition, expect a wait before reconstruction can begin. Building materials are in very short supply already because of COVID, and it will get much worse now. We need to expect concrete floors and exposed studs for a while.
Okay, while this is not good news, we do have much to be thankful for and we will get through this as we get through everything - TOGETHER. High on my gratitude list is that the sanctuary not affected, save perhaps that one sink in the sacristy, that our Business Administrator and Board of Trustees are so incredibly capable, and that we have a proven track record of not only surviving, but eventually thriving in the face of challenges far greater than this.

The timing and the extended projection for repairs is unfortunate just as we were beginning to dream of a return to some semblance of normalcy sooner rather than later. But we have come this far together through a global pandemic, what's a little flood? Be assured, we will get through this; but restoring the Vastine Building will be a lengthy process, and in the coming days we will be guided by the insurance company and restoration firm. We will keep you informed, and we welcome any questions or suggestions you might have.

Oh, 2021, thus far you disappoint mightily!

Grace and peace,
Pastor Lara
aka "The Vicar"
Apple Corps meets via Zoom at 9:30 every Sunday morning. The Zoom Meeting ID is 293-856-379 or click the link below to go directly to Zoom.
Branches meets via Zoom at 9:45 every Sunday morning. The Zoom Meeting ID is 213-928-173 or click the link below.

Genesis meets via Zoom at 9:30 every Sunday morning. The Zoom Meeting ID is 937 5166 7725 or click the link below.
"I CONNECT" meets via Zoom at 9:45 every Sunday morning.The Zoom Meeting ID is 963-430-720 or click the link below.

Journey meets via Zoom at 9:30 every Sunday morning.The Zoom Meeting ID is 429-051-096 or click the link below.
New Beginnings meets via Zoom at 9:45 every Sunday morning.The Zoom Meeting ID is 387-197-129 or click the link below .
The Way meets via Zoom at NOON every Sunday morning.The Zoom Meeting ID is 450-965-323 or click the link below for Zoom.
Sunday School for preschool and elementary school meets via Zoom at 9:45. To maintain a secure site for our children, please email Ms. Robin for login information before Sunday.

Prayer Concerns & Sympathy
Please continue to check the Facebook Prayer Page for daily updates or concerns. To be redirected to the Martin UMC Care Team Prayer Ministry page, click here:

Martin Community:
Jay Bradford, Rosemary Dawes, Doris Fash, Barb Herbison, Emily Herbison, John Longyear, Susan McCumber, Karen McDaniel, Pat Murphy, Melissa Norton, Dottie Rust, Marcie Smith, Catherine Yoro

Family & Friends:
Ryan Campanaro, Jill Davis, Carolyn Guice, Gloria Jackson, Jacob Larsen, Glendora Waldrup, Kathy Walton

Prayer Requests Specifically Regarding COVID-19:
Gary Good, Amanda Johnston, Robert & Carmen White

Names remain for two weeks
unless otherwise requested.

Please remember to notify Deanna
regarding any changes to the prayer list.