This Was Fun!
Mallory Gibson’s joy was unmistakable during a television interview following the blessing and dedication of her Habitat for Humanity home – the 2017 Catholic build – on Feb. 10. “I didn’t know that buying a home could actually be fun,” she said, “but this was fun!”
“What a joy to be with you today,” Bishop Joseph M. Sigel told a house full of friends, family and Habitat volunteers before he blessed the home for Gibson and her twin sons, Kingston and Kobe. “We ask God’s blessing and grace on this home and this family.”
Bishop Siegel sprinkled the home with holy water after finishing the prayer of blessing. Benedictine Sister Jane Michele McClure, Habitat-Evansville’s Major Gifts Officer, assisted Bishop Siegel by leading the prayers of intercession and reading a passage from From the Gospel of John that Gibson picked for the ceremony.
Others who spoke during the blessing and dedication ceremony said that Gibson’s work toward the “sweat equity” in her new home was epic.
“Mallory is a work horse … a real work horse,” said Habitat-Evansville Executive Director Beth Folz. “No job was too big or too small for her. And her efforts were critical to the move of our office to its new location.
“You have a heart of gold,” Folz added, speaking directly to Gibson. “We are so privileged to be able to work with you.”
Partner families agree to provide at least 300 hours in “sweat equity” before taking possession of their homes. They not only work on the house being built for them, but also on other Habitat builds and efforts like the office move Folz mentioned.
Michelle Korff, a member of Holy Redeemer Parish in Evansville, serves as chair of Catholics for Habitat, and she congratulated Gibson and wish her and her sons well. “You have done us a great favor by allowing us to partner with you and make your new home a reality.”
The printed program for the ceremony included a tribute to long-time Catholics for Habitat and Habitat-Evansville supporter Marian Witting, who died on Jan. 22. She and her husband, John, supported Habitat builds for more than two decades. Their son, Steve, attended the blessing and dedication, and he spoke briefly.
“Mom’s up in heaven now,” he said. “Her favorite part of these events was watching the kids like Kingston and Kobe enjoying their new home.
“In addition to the reading from the Gospel of John, I am thinking of another passage from the Bible … about the seeds that fall on good ground,” Witting said to Gibson. “You are the seeds that fall on good ground. This home is a legacy to you and your family, to Mom and Dad, and to all the Habitat volunteers.”
Core Crew member Severin Wellinghoff, who also served as a member of the Knights of Columbus 4th Degree Honor Guard for the ceremony, presented Gibson with the keys to her new home.
“There is nothing I can say that could thank you guys enough for all you have done,” Gibson said. “And the Core Crew is simply amazing. There were days last summer when I just couldn’t take the heat … and there they were with their hammers and nails, working away. Thank you for all of your efforts.”