Haven’t updated for a while. Highway 34 is open, ahead of schedule. It is still considered a temporary road, but we can get to Drake from Loveland on paved two-lane surface. The folks on Storm Mountain are moving home. But we may never say that things are back to normal in the canyon.
Everyone who goes up remarks on the changes and the damage that can still be seen. The road crews have done so much, but there is still so much to do. We have limited access to the Chapel, a single lane road with no parking. The issue is what’s left from the flood. Boulders sit everywhere, I am told, and many of them are large. A primary issue for returning to the Chapel will be parking.
The interior has been torn out, thanks to our two couples who have worked so hard. A crew from Americorp, based in Estes Park, came down to help on a couple of days. With their help, the rugs and walls were torn out and mud removed. Lots of hard work was accomplished. Now we have to get the electric system inspected and repaired in order to get lights and we will have someone check the furnace. Still much to do.
The expenses of the Chapel will be significant, one adjuster (who told us he couldn’t help us) said at least $50,000 to return to what we had. Obviously, that number is yet to be calculated, but it does not include any parking lot work. Since we had no flood insurance coverage, being ineligible, and no government funds are available for the church, we are simply trusting that the Lord will provide when the funds are needed. So far, we haven’t spent much to get things torn out.
We mourn the passing of our friend Jim. He struggled toward the end and Carol had the double burden of being evacuated and being with him through the difficulties. But God is faithful and provided a place to stay and the stamina to handle things. We will miss Jim, with his kind words and smile and handshake. Praise the Lord for the hope we have as believers!
We are getting ready for our annual Christmas dinner at Golden Corral on December 15th. These things are important for keeping our folks together. We hope that some who are living in Denver or other places where they can’t normally gather with us on Sunday, will be able to be here for that special time.
We appreciate the prayers of those who read here. We continue to enjoy our stay with the folks at Allnutt. They have been so gracious and generous. We have been given Bibles by the Gideons and hymnals from a church in Nebraska. Our attendance has been smaller, but steady and we are blessed. God is good . . . all the time!
When I heard NPR’s story about your church this morning, I was fascinated with the similarity between the Chapel of the Interlude and the Presbyterian Church in Hill City, KS. Like yours, our church family is comprised of the elderly and the more elderly. No kids, except those who occasionally attend with their grandparents. However, it was when your pastor was broadcast saying that your hymns are all traditional and familiar . . . it would make no sense to cause parishioners to feel dislocated by music not of their generations’ lifelong musical history . . . . that I had to laugh out loud, and figure we’re probably cousins in the faith. We’ve been told that to attract young people, we need to feature their kind of service . . . their genre of music. And while we respect that, probably we’ll not make any drastic changes. Ours is a family that enjoys being together . . . “passes the peace” with the enthusiasm of a bunch of Baptists . . . produces anthems and a Christmas cantata with a choir that’s ‘way better than it should be . . . gathers for incomparable potlucks . . . contributes to missions at home and away . . . and just generally keeps rollin’ along. I’m sorry for the hardships you experienced in the flood a few years ago; I applaud your recovery and renewal. Hope that someday our church families can become acquainted.