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Rebecca Holz, Brenda Badger and Amy Freyberger help create a space for kids to play. This area became a sandbox with toy donations from Stone Soup. (Submitted photo)

Church members do a mini 'extreme makeover'

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Members at All Saints Lutheran Church in Cottage Grove, with help from Thrivent Financial for Lutherans and area businesses, accomplished a mini extreme makeover for a Cottage Grove resident in early summer.

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"That is what the Christian faith is all about -- helping each other through the good times and the times that seem overwhelming," said All Saints Senior Pastor Jules Erickson. "I am amazed, time and again, at how awesome this community is at All Saints. I put out an announcement on a Sunday morning and three weeks later over 300 volunteer hours have transformed something that was broken into something beautiful!"

Erickson said the homeowner lost her husband several years ago to cancer. She was not the one in the family that kept up the outside of the house -- that had been her husband's job.

"It just got away from me," she said.

"The next thing we knew Thrivent stepped up with a grant application, two church members said they'd take a look, and the church council said, 'Go for it.' The rest is self-evident," Erickson said.

More than $1,600 worth of supplies and services were donated by Pam Phinney at Sherwin Williams, Dan Vanelli Construction, All Season Tree Services, Rumpca Companies, Tennis Sanitation, Bert McEathron, Aggregate Industries and Ernest Construction Co.

By late July, volunteers were upgrading the deck and were still looking for help to replace the roof, Erickson said.

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