Neighbors Helping Neighbors – #WATWB

The article I am sharing today is from last fall, but I checked, and the facts remain, and the kindness appears to still be being shown. It’s the kind of story that probably happens in towns all over the world, but in this case, it landed a little closer to home. I was born into one of the communities mentioned, and our family moved into the other community. In addition, the man mentioned in the story grew up in the neighborhood in which I was born. He was closer to my brother’s age, but I remember him.

The story is about a church in Bridgeville, Pennsylvania which suffered from devastating flooding and how a church in neighboring Mt Lebanon, PA opened its doors and made room for the small parish to continue to hold religious services.

Heavy rain and flooding this summer proved particularly devastating to the First Baptist Church of Bridgeville.

The church, on Bower Hill Road, had experienced flooding before, but on June 20 had about 2 feet of water on its ground floor, according to Deacon Ray Partee.

“That’s the worst it ever was,” he said, adding that flooding “was like a river.”

The First Baptist Church of Bridgeville is located about two blocks from the house I lived in until I was 10. I remember that house being flooded, and I remember hearing stories of worse floods. I have also read many stories, in recent years, about how Chartiers Creek continues to flood this area.

The feel-good part of this story is introduced by the following excerpt:

Just after the flooding occurred in June, the Rev. Brian Snyder, pastor at Bower Hill Community Church, a Presbyterian Church in Mt. Lebanon, received a call from the Christian Associates of Southwestern Pennsylvania, a nonprofit that promotes Christian unity, asking if the church had room for First Baptist to conduct its services.

“They wondered if we had space,” Rev. Snyder said.

They did.

Rev. Snyder opened the chapel at Bower Hill Community Church to members of First Baptist for their Sunday services.

“We had space. We told them to make it their own,” Rev. Snyder said.

Although the article had numerous personal connections for me, I think it should make everybody smile and it should make a lot of people think. Here we have people from different religions, finding their common ground and helping each other. The world could use a lot more of that spirt.

The “We are the World” Blogfest is celebrating its two-year anniversay. This blogfest’s goal is to spread the message of light, hope and love in today’s world. We are challenging all participants to share the positive side of humanity. This month’s co-hosts: Shilpa GargSylvia McGrath , Belinda WitzenHausen, Damyanti Biswas, and myself. welcome participants and encourage all to join in during future months. #WATWB is a blog hop on the last Friday of every month. Click HERE to check out the intention and rules of the blogfest and feel free to sign up at any time


The gallery includes a few photos from previous posts, including two of Chartiers Creek. On any given day, it’s hard to imagine that little creek flooding a significant portion of the town, but I can assure you it does. I’ve seen the creek well above flood stage and into the basement of the house I grew up in.

75 thoughts on “Neighbors Helping Neighbors – #WATWB

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  1. Kindness in action brings so many good fruits – good article (and isn’t it crazy how the big Houston church (Joel Osteen) did not open their doors when the storm came there)
    And the flashback photos are nice to see connections to your childhood

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks John. I identify more with Bridgeville than the town we moved to. I continued to spend a lot of time in that town while growing up. I hope they can find a permanent home for their church, but this made me feel good.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for sharing this ‘feel good’ story. I love the way the pastor of the Community Church didn’t hesitate for a minute to offer space to the members of the First Baptist Church in their time of need. Goodness and kindness are still alive and well.

    It’s amazing and downright scary how those meandering “cricks” can become so violent and deadly, usually without warning.

    I remember from past posts that you spoke about the love that abounded in your childhood home. You were raised by an amazing family circle, and their goodness and kindness lives on in you today Dan. And no doubt you’ve passed that on to Faith.

    This story was such a breath of fresh air amidst the stories the news media spits out 24/7. Yes indeed, goodness and kindness are still alive and well.
    🐾Ginger 🐾

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Ginger. Finding and sharing the good stories is the goal of WATWB. It started out to be a one-year deal, but we’re starting the third year today.

      Knowing a little bit about both towns, this rapid response wouldn’t have been expected. I’m so glad the pastor took the opportunity to do the right thing and help his neighbors.

      I played on the banks of that little creek, and I saw it rise on numerous occasions. I didn’t want to move away from that town, but I was happy to move away from the creek. It has flooded the area several times in the past 10 years. It runs through a long steep valley. In fact, the school district we started out in is called Chartiers Valley Schools.

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  3. Fantastic post! It’s great when communities pull together in times of need. Thank you so much for sharing this story, for co-hosting and for being an integral part of #WATWB. We’ve been going strong for two years thanks to you and our #WATWB family! Happy Anniversary!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Belinda. This has been a great blogfest. I’m so glad it’s continuing. These days, when communities of faith seem to be the targets of anger and hatred, it was really nice to see them coming together like this.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. A perfect story for #WATWB. I like any story that talks about cooperation. Also the name of that Baptist church is a delight. It sounds like a place that should be in a southern noir novel. Congrats on two years with the blogfest.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Ally. I remember that church from when I was growing up, It was a powerful community of faith 60 years ago, and it still seems strong today. It’s very much like the little church we attended in another neighboring town. I am happy that WATWB is still going strong, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I really enjoyed your gallery, Dan. My favorite is of the lone man just sitting in contemplation. And your post made me smile, knowing there is kindness in this world. And to embrace another “religion” in the time of crisis is even better yet. Boundaries are coming down, as well they should. Thank you for a very uplifting post today. Have a great day! 🌟🌟🌟

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Steve. It’s so good to see these communities of faith providing the much needed support. The personal connection was a little added benefit. Mr. Partee taught me how to fix a baseball card in my bike spokes. I’ll always remember him doing that, he was a “big kid” in my mind at that time.

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  6. But there is an interesting lesson here and a bit of a historical perspective.

    When we were kids, that sharing of churches might not have happened. Today, we speak of the racial divide but back then, it was religion that divided us. When I worked (IT) for the American Lutheran Church, a pastor told me that a congregation had fired its pastor for offering space to the Baptists after their church burned down.

    That was common then.

    My neighbor told me how the Methodists around here had a committee that reviewed land sales. If you sold land to anyone they didn’t approve of, you were out of the church.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Dan – a great post about community and people pulling together and helping out. Those little creeks can explode with water as it gushes and rushes through – really frightening. Thanks for reminding us that help and kindness happens at home … we just need to give a little more in our localities. Cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Dan, I like this post on so many levels. So great that different communities can help each other out. The local Syrian Community uses our Church for their Easter ceremonies and I love that we can help them out that way. I also think it’s good for us, from time to time, to share stories nearer to us. My first #WATWB post ‘Sunsets for Kate’ was about a girl I went to school with who has Usher Syndrome. We had about 250 people in our matriculation year, so I hardly knew her back then (30 years this year!). Now, since #WATWB, we often chat to each other. You and your blog have taught me much, Dan. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Simon. The churches might be different, but they are your neighbors. I think that spirit is what makes a community. This story brought back nice memories from my early childhood. The Deacon mentioned in the story was about 5 years older than me. I ran with my brother and older cousin. But, he stopped one day to help me put a baseball card in my bike spokes. It;s such a simple thing, but I still remember how good it made me feel.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. “people from different religions, finding their common ground and helping each other. The world could use a lot more of that spirit.”

    This. If we only had more of this spirit, the world would have far lesser problems. Thanks for co-hosting, and for your support to WATWB, Dan.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. No, but my feet feel better at the end of the day if I’m wearing something with good support. Also, I broke my foot once (twisting it) so I appreciate a more stable shoe.

          Like

            1. The nice thing about Solomon is that all there shoes are built off the same foundational elements. So, in general, if you are comfortable in a pair, you will feel good in all the shoes in that line. I have sneakers, hiking shoes, hiking boots and a pair of what we call “snow sneakers” (insulated low-rise boots) that I’ve acquired over time. All Solomon and they all feel the same when I’m wearing them. Other than dress shoes, I mostly wear the hiking boots and hiking shoes when I’m walking. I wear work boots in my shop and when doing projects where I will be standing a lot (walking and standing really require different shoes). Sorry if this was too much shoe talk.

              Liked by 1 person

            2. Dan, I am a talker. You can write ten times long comment and I will still love it. Unfortunately, Saloman don’t have their market presence here. New Balance just arrived few months ago. I like Nike but my next shoes will be either Asics Metarun or Adidas Solar Drive ST (st stands for stability in most brands). I generally don’t commute much so these days I’m not much into sneakers but I still gather information.

              Liked by 1 person

  10. An extremely feel-good story. We need to know about such acts of kindness and large-heartedness. Because it’s such acts that make this world a wonderful place to live in.

    — Pradeep | bpradeepnair.blogspot.com

    Liked by 1 person

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