Saturday, May 23, 2015

Why What is Happening in Puerto Rico May Touch Every American

I read two good summary articles about how the economic crisis in Puerto Rico is connected to US politics and economics.

The first one is a good overview, while the second speaks more about the economic impacts that it might have on America.

Why Every American Should Care About Puerto Rico's Austerity Crisis

If you thought bailing out Detroit hurt the American economy, then what is happening now in Puerto Rico should get your attention. This is an older article, but if anything, the situation has gotten worse since it was written.

Puerto Rico, with at least $70 billion in debt, confronts a rising economic misery

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Tearing Down and Building Up

Bedroom Bathroom Door Now an  Exit
We decided to fix the bathroom and carport roof at the same time. Even though it is expensive for us, doing both projects at once will save on the cost of demolition, carting away the debris and it also enables us to pour the cement for both projects at the same time. So, although the cost of doing two projects is great ($23,000), doing them together reduces the cost by about $3,000.

Tina is a very good at stretching our missionary budget to cover our needs. She also has good taste and does a lot of construction work herself. But this project is beyond both our budget and our skill level. We are having a contractor do the cement work and Tina is picking out the tile and other things.

Please pray with us and help us if you would.

Where Our Bathroom Used to Be
I know that praying for a missionary's bathroom and carport seems like an odd request, but we have to live somewhere to do the work here.

Having a bathroom that is not falling off of the house and a carport that isn't falling on our heads are things that we hope to have soon.
Carport with Forms, Ready for Concrete

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Please Help Heal Our Missionary Home

Tina and I have been under stress about our home lately. I feel we have a good attitude about all the bad news that has recently beset us, but it takes prayer, a lot of conversation and the emotional support of our friends to keeps us in the good attitude zone.

Here is what is happening:

We were told by a contractor that we trust, that our basic home was in good condition.The problem is with the carport and the bathroom that were added later. The bathroom has a bad foundation, while the carport roof has a cement roof that was made from poor quality cement.

It looks like the owners used sand from a local beach, and this is certainly cheaper than buying it, but it is poor quality and salty. This made our rebar rust and spread like a cancer through the carport, endangering us with falling chunks of concrete.
Bathroom Crack: big as a brush handle

So, inspite of the fact that our bathroom is falling of off the southeast end of our house, the collapsing roof of our carport on the northwest side of our home has become our new priority.

What does this mean financially?

The demolition and reconstruction of the concrete carport is $16,000. The low-ball quote for the bathroom is for $10,000. That is $26,000 that we don't have. So where should we start and what should we do?

Prayer to God and communicating with our friends and supporters are the first steps. Next, we had to consider our health and safety.

We have begun the demolition of the carport, to remove the danger of falling concrete on our heads.

We have decided to do nothing about the bathroom until it becomes unusable. Although the cracks are so big that I can see daylight through them and put a pencil in them, the plumbing still works and that is a blessing.

At least the core of our home was built well. It was just the shoddy construction of the later additions that are causing the problems.

Our house was built on a firm foundation, but those who came later and made additions, did not put those additions on the same foundation.

I think there is a lesson for us in this. It isn't enough that we build on the correct foundation, we must not make any additions or extensions that are not supported by that same foundation.

We need your prayers, emotional and financial support. Please consider giving an extra offering, a special prayer or an encouraging word (or all three!) soon.

You can contact our mission agency here:

Peeping Tom Bathtub & Shower?
May God Bless You and Yours
(Dios Les Bendiga)

Steve Prelgovisk
CBM, Puerto Rico