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The praise doesn’t belong to me, but to everyone who pitched in

In the 1980s, I was in the Army. My job was to manage a motor pool. My friends will tell you that to this day I can barely change a tire. I was proud of myself when I figured out how to jump start a car.

How did I manage a motor pool if I don’t know anything about fixing vehicles? Because I had a team of folks who all knew their jobs.

I had four generator mechanics and nine vehicle mechanics and an amazing parts clerk who were good at what they did.

Most of the time I had a motor sergeant who’d earned knuckle scabs up under the hood of vehicles, and when the mechanics had a mechanical question, that was where they went.

It worked well. We kept our generators running and trucks—ranging from pickup trucks to semi-trailer tractors – on the German roads and ready to go during the Cold War. If the Soviets came barreling across the Eastern Bloc borders, we’d be ready to go.

I was given an Army Achievement Medal for “my” performance, but without that team, I couldn’t have won that award.

For the past two months, an amazing transformation has been happening at Faithbridge’s new facility just across the street from Sto-Rox High School.

As people have noted the changes to the building’s exterior, the landscaping, and the interior of the sanctuary, a lot of folks have been telling me what a wonderful job I’ve been doing.

This reminds me of “my” Army Achievement Medal.

All of this work has been done by a great support system that believe in the ministry, from church members laboring everyday to Marty Griffin getting the word out that we need help and folks like Tudi Mechanical, McCormick’s Heating and Cooling, Sam Miller Plumbing, Always Perfect Contracting and many others pitching in to help.

It's obvious that a lot of folks believe in the ministry and the fruit it bears. What’s not obvious to many on the outside is that I often play the smallest part in it.

I’m humbled and grateful for everyone who has been so gracious with their time and talent, especially Sam Miller, one of my ministers and best friends, who served as the field general for this whole thing.

With the right support system, everyone can come out better than their own efforts.

Join me in praying that Faithbridge can in many ways serve as that support system for our town and region… and know that is our deep desire.

Rev. James Hogan is a native of Stowe Township and serves as pastor of Faithbridge Community Church in McKees Rocks.

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