Celebrating a Century: St. Mark’s 100 House
A non-profit’s favorite phone call is one announcing an unsolicited sponsorship or gift. The March 2022 call from Pastor Matt Smith of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church was that kind of call. The Church wanted to sponsor a Habitat house to celebrate an exciting milestone – their Centennial!
St. Mark’s has supported Asheville Habitat for more than 23 years as an active participant in our annual House of Faith. In addition to contributing financially, St. Mark’s volunteers have contributed 13,500 hours of service to the building of local Habitat homes. Because St. Mark’s partnership with Habitat has been a big part of their philanthropic efforts for the last quarter century, building a home to celebrate their anniversary was a natural fit.
Pastor Smith shared, “Partnering with Habitat was an easy decision for us. In fact, it was one of the selling points for our campaign. Everybody was excited to get to sponsor this house, and that excitement is a big part of what helped make our campaign a success! We’re grateful for the wonderful work Habitat does in our community, and proud to partner with Habitat in giving people pathways to the stable foundation that homeownership provides.”
St. Mark’s fundraising goal was $100,000. They intended to donate $55,000 to Habitat, and spend the rest on updating their 100-year old building. With $108,000 raised, the goal was surpassed.
On July 15, 2023, Pastor Smith presented Andy Barnett, Asheville Habitat’s CEO, with a check at St. Mark’s roaring 20’s themed 100th Anniversary Party at Pack’s Tavern.
Known as St. Mark’s 100 House, this future home to Stephanie Heindl and her adult son, Tommy, got underway in February and is nearing completion. The home will be part of a November 10th Dedication event, and the Heindl family will close and move in, in December.
Habitat core volunteer Henry Ulrichs serves as Faith Community Leadership Liaison for the church and recruits volunteers for the annual House of Faith house. “I am filled with joy over the 100th Anniversary House sponsorship as well as the overwhelming jobsite support provided by volunteers from the congregation. All was done with such willingness and enthusiasm. This summer I was thrilled when my granddaughter volunteered to join me on the jobsite one day a week.”
Ulrichs added, “When I am at a Habitat jobsite and I see a child riding a bike or running in the yard, or I see a homeowner walking a dog or sitting on their porch, relaxing, I am reminded of why we core volunteers put in the hours we do to provide affordable housing to those in need. The friendships I have made with other volunteers with whom I work each week is a bonus.”
We are grateful for the enduring partnership of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church and are honored to be part of their 100th Anniversary. Cheers to the next 100!