One School’s Trash is a Missionary’s Treasure
Athens, W.Va. – Who in the world would want fixtures from 50-year-old buildings used by students … and, lots of them?
Members of the Kegley Baptist Church and the Greenbrier Regular Baptist Church were on the campus of Concord University bright and early Monday, June 19, to remove fixtures from College Courts. All but two of the 12 buildings are being demolished this summer to make way for much-needed replacement housing and parking. The “Courts,” built in 1956 (with additional units added in 1961), accommodated mostly students with families who attended Concord. In later years, they attracted older, non-traditional students, many who were single. The Courts, also known as the marriage units, provided housing when none was available in the community. Now, says Rick Dillon, director of housing and student life, there are options available.
Mr. Lonnie Shinn, owner of Shinn’s Tree Service, and his wife, Brenda Sue, are members of the Kegley Church that supports both a camp and a Bible college in Costa Rica. “Camp Joy,” managed by Jonathan White, is a two-hour drive from the Calvary Baptist Bible College, managed by Jonathan’s dad, Dr. Danny White, a Boone County native. Dr. White found his calling in Costa Rica 33 years ago, and now, one of his four children is nearby. “All of my children are serving as either pastors or missionaries,” noted Dr. White, who also raised five foster children, and he is a proud grandfather to 12 grandchildren!
Costa Rica is a Central American country that borders both the Caribbean Sea and the North Pacific Ocean, between Nicaragua and Panama and is slightly smaller than West Virginia with around 4 million people (W.Va. has 1.8 million).
“My wife and I have been to Costa Rica twice since 2001,” noted Mr. Shinn. “We’ll use the fixtures we remove from the College Courts to install in several different buildings at Camp Joy, which was launched in 1982. Items like mirrors are in short supply in the jungle country. “Several teenage girls will use a small, broken piece of a mirror to see what they look like. They will be surprised to see their whole face in one of these nice mirrors! We’ll take the steel bunk beds because termites can’t eat them, commodes and lavatories.
“Our motivation is to make the world a better place,” concluded Mr. Shinn. “We’ve seen kids get saved.”
“We’re glad to be a part of it,” added Mrs. Shinn.
Jonathan White said that, “We’ll drive the materials to Costa Rica in trucks that were donated to us. We are so appreciative of these fixtures from Concord!”
In addition to collecting the fixtures, Jonathan is establishing “Motors for Missions.” He will pick up old cars and then sell them, the proceeds funding construction projects at the camp. The organization is a ministry of Greenbrier Regular Baptist Church in Ronceverte and a web site is under construction, www.motorsformissions.org.
Mr. Steve Fury from the Greenbrier Regular Baptist Church was on campus to help, in addition to Mr. Shinn, his wife, Brenda Sue, Dr. White, and his son, Jonathan.
Call Jonathan White at 1-304-645-4302 after July 12 for more information on “Motors for Missions.”
PHOTO: Lonnie Shinn, Brenda Sue Shinn, Danny White, Jonathan White, Steve Fury