Friday, April 4, 2014

An old church, Rutherfordton, NC

...The year 1963…we are 23-24 yrs old……..

We said our good byes to the wonderful Missouri folk. Mixed feelings, hating to leave, but a trend had started, was it greener pastures?  Or was it the excitement of something new.  I still do not know what motivated me.

But, as in the past, everything we owned could fit in the car and on the luggage rack. This assignment would be different. We knew the Missouri folk when we came.   This one held more anticipation because we did not know these folk we were headed for, although it was our home state. We always loved trips.

It was a nice wood frame parsonage with a room for the boys.  Clean and neat and also had a washer and dryer, we had never had that.

Again we met some very nice and supportive folk. At this church we also had a young professional quality singer, Kenneth Hensley. He was George Beverly Shea quality. Later proved it, singing with professionals and at huge church supported meetings. He married Priscilla, one of the best pianist in the world and that is not  an exaggeration. He now is a retired Dr. of Divinity.

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(The preacher and his sons in Rutherfordton, NC)

The church did not have a Sunday School department building. The church was out of debt, so I did some figuring and knew we could afford to build some Sunday School rooms. I had never built a building before but looking at it I thought, “How hard can that be?”

After the land graded, Kenneth and I mixed the mortar and laid the blocks for the foundation, at the instructions of his uncle. Then we laid out the floor and added it.  We would have volunteers every once in awhile. Then blessings of Blessings, Luke Tucker, a general contractor (Von Dale’s dad) came up to show us how to do the rest.  I learned that building was really fun and enjoyed ever bit of it.

The fun part was when it was finished and we needed the electricity turned on.  Picture this: The building is finished, plumbed, electrical and paint,  DONE! So I went down town to the power company. “I need the power run to a new building.”

“No problem preacher, what is the permit numbers? I will need your plans also.”

“What permits and plans?”

“The numbers off your building permit showing all the inspections were completed as you built. I’ll need the architect you used.”

“I don’t have a permit, and I drew the plans as we went along.”

“You are kidding right? A commercial building completed and no permits?”

“Yes Sir, that is right, I didn’t know I needed those.”

“Excuse me, I will be right back.”  The man disappeared. I stood there wondering WHAT HAVE I DONE?

A few minutes later he returned, “Reverend, this is our local engineer. He knows the City inspectors, they are going to follow you out to the site and tell you what has to be done. If this was not a church, you would tear out the sheet rock so we could see the electrical and plumbing.  IF they decide that, it will be the least you will do. I have never heard of anything like this in my life.” He said shaking his head.

I have NEVER appreciated church going people so much in my life. The Engineer and two inspectors went thru the building pretty thoroughly, They were good natured Laughing and talking, not believing  this had been done.

In the end we conferenced. “Reverend, the building looks good. The work is near top notch, who drew the plans and done the work?”

“I drew the plans as we went,” and I handed him my pencil sketches, “some volunteers from the church and I done the work.  We did have a General Contractor out of Charlotte here with us for the roof and some interior walls.”

He smiled big, “WE have all had dealings in building for our churches, but to be honest this is the craziest situation we have seen. But this is what we are going to do. The city EXPECTS money for permits. You get a check for the amount the city says, $35.00. When that is done the inspector is going to sign off on all the inspections, when that is completed, come down to the power company and we will give you power. BUT PLEASE DON’T DO SOMETHING LIKE THIS AGAIN!”

“YES SIR, and thank you all. and I am sorry for all the trouble.”

“No trouble, you do realize you built practically an entire church with no permits don’t YOU?  Please be careful, if this building burns in the next few months we are all in trouble.” added the city inspectors.

Boy, was the Lord on my side or what?

Thanks for coming by the LOG.

Nite Shipslog


There are times in life that forgiveness is easier than getting permission.  (I would hate to face that situation described above, today)



Well Ford said it was here to stay, but it was not.


But the 1959 Plymouth  Fury was a hit.


Lucy said...

Love that part of the story best so far. Must admit I have not read all of the entries but when I did I really liked finding more out about the Jack of all trades.

Anonymous said...

Great entry. I'm with you--who ever thought you would have to ask permission from the government to build a building?
It's great, though, that it was worked out without having to tear anything out.
Good picture of you and the boys, too.

bonnie k.

Cindi said...

great story. Who knew? lol
glad they let u keep the bldg, rather than tear it all down. ♥

Rose said...

Certainly does not surprise me that our talented Jack can build and/or fix just about anything.

Wish you were my neighbor. I have tons of things that need repairs and/or upgrades! LOL

Hugs to my favorite couple!

Elizabeth said...

So glad that you did not have to redo it! Love the pic!

Jean said...

You have to get a paid permit here to build anything, but back in the early 2000 Grover and I decided to build another storage building. I told him he had to get a permit, Grover, this is my land and I build what I want on it, ha. We noticed the guy that lives on the street over from us, ( he was a councilmen for the city) would past by and keep looking our way, but they never said or done anything . Love reading your stories. Jean

betty said...

Now that is too funny that you "worked backward" so to speak in that the building was completed and then came the permits! Glad it did work out though, can you imagine having to tear down and start again? So this must have put a bit of a "building bug" into you for your next career?


Chatty Crone said...

Jack we could really use you here man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You would hate it.

shirl72 said...

Dad prayers that he prayed for us were being answered. Mercy have Mercy, that story I didn't not know. That is one time the Lord was on your side. I cannot imagine what would have happened in today's world. Sometime things do work out in our favor.

Paula said...

This is the neatest story I've ever heard. So good the city let you get by with it for the church. I think I forgot to tell you I donated one of "Toby's Tales" to our pretty new just opened library.

Jackie said... are part of the "good old days" before permits and regulations. And you were very blessed to get by with this one!
Where are you and Sherry this week?

Dar said...

Well, I'll be, they let ya get away with a doozy., but that's wonderful. After all, you didn't know...can you imagine building a public building without the right permits today? They'd have to string ya up!
I see you had a picture of one of those kitchen water pumps...we have one at the isn't hooked up but it's there.
And I think it was Jack Jr. on a toy tractor, I have one of those too, behind the barn. It's going in my flower bed this yr. with the old are something.
I've enjoyed following you and Sherry through your past adventures. So interesting. I'm sure the boys are reading a few things they never heard before, too. loveyaboth from uphereinthecold

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

So glad it all worked out. I guess the good Lord was watching out for you.


Always a bunch of hoops to jump through and all that red tape. You all just skipped a few steps.

Louis la Vache said...

Poor Jim Nance... He had become friends with Henry Ford II and HF II wanted to help Packard. There was even a project to put Packard sheet metal on the '57 Lincoln body shell to give Packard a new-for-'57 car when Nance couldn't get financing to launch the '57s Packard had planned. But Ford management fought Henry tooth and nail on giving any help of any kind to Packard and talked Henry out of both loaning Packard money or supplying Packard with the Lincoln body shells. When Curtiss-Wright took over Studebaker-Packard, it was strictly to milk S-P of any defense contracts they had left after Eisenhower's Defense Secretary, Charlie Wilson (who came from GM) had cancelled most of S-P's defense contracts. Nance was counting on the cash flow from that defense work to fund the new '57s. Packard had landed a contract to build jet engines for the Air Force and Nance had used that contract to justify the new engine and transmission plant he built in Utica, MI. Then Wilson axed Packard's contract. So when Packard folded, Nance was out of a job and Henry Ford put him in charge of the Lincoln-Mercury-Edsel Division. The long knives at Ford were out for Nance among the same Ford manager who killed the idea of Ford helping bail Packard out. They saw to it that Nance failed and did everything they could to scuttle the Edsel as a result. That's the seldom-told back story on one of the big reasons the Edsel sank like a rock... From Ford, Nance went on to run a bank where he was very successful - and he had been a super star at GE's Hotpoint division before coming to Packard. Later, Nance endowed at chair at at business school at one of the universities in Ohio.