The Jewish Heart of Denton County
1887 Timber Creek Rd.
Flower Mound, TX 75028
Habitat - News
Where are we in the project?
Let the building begin!
Here you can stay up to date on the latest from Inter-Faith 2012 Home Build by Congregation Kol Ami.
• Community Construction: Groups Join Forces For Habitat For Humanity Of Denton County’s First Interfaith Build
By RUTH HAESEMEYER
neighborsgo staff reporter
It will still be a little while until ground is broken on a Habitat for Humanity project planned for Denton County. But one of the leaders involved with the effort said a different kind of construction is already under way.
“It gives us an opportunity to build those bridges, build community trust,” said Shaheed Luqman, secretary of the board of the Islamic Association of Lewisville and Flower Mound.
The Islamic Association is one of four faith groups behind Habitat for Humanity of Denton County’s first interfaith build.
Creekwood Christian Church, Grace Community Assembly of God and Congregation Kol Ami are partnering with the IALFM to support and assist in the building of a home for a family in need.
Some details — such as the selection of a site in Denton County and an exact start date for the build — are still being worked out, but the groups have raised the funds needed for the project, said Becky Ricci, Creekwood Christian Church communications director.
Ricci said she’s hopeful that construction could begin sometime this fall.
When it does, the teamwork that started with fundraising and planning will continue as members of the various groups help with the actual build.
“It will be a true interfaith effort,” Ricci said.
Roger Anderson, Habitat for Humanity of Denton County construction services manager, said that although this is his group’s first interfaith build, it’s something Habitat for Humanity International has seen before and would like to see more of. Ideally, such projects could lead to another kind of diversity for the county’s Habitat for Humanity chapter , he said.
“By starting to bring in the interfaith groups, perhaps we can reach more partner families of different faiths, as well as build more homes,” he said.
In a way, the interfaith build got its start more than 10 years ago with another event — an interfaith prayer meeting called by Creekwood representatives in the wake of Sept. 11, 2001.
“That’s where the idea started,” Ricci said.
She said the church opened up the planned build to other faith groups as a way to commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11 last year. Invitations were then sent out to various congregations in March. Kol Ami and the IALFM responded almost immediately, she said, with Grace Community Assembly of God joining in a little later. Ricci said all had a shared vision for the project: to serve.
“That’s probably the one thing that has united us above everything … to serve our community,” she said.
Through fundraisers, including a joint yard sale and creation and sale of an interfaith cookbook, the groups have raised a combined $75,000, Ricci said.
Representatives of the four faith groups have also met every few weeks, rotating between each other’s facilities. Laurie Appelbaum, vice president of communications for Kol Ami, said this has been an interesting experience.
“We’ve had the opportunity to learn about that and see each other’s places where we worship,” she said.
Already, Ricci said, a lot of friendships have been forged through the project.
Appelbaum said everyone has worked well together and stayed focused on the project’s purpose.
“It’s to provide a home for a family and unite our community,” she said.
In many ways, that second goal is already met among the groups, Ricci said. But they want to see that spirit spread.
“The one thing that we’ve all come to the conclusion of is that we have way more in common than we have differences,” she said. “But we hope that that will translate into the community, to be able to show respect and celebrate our diversity.”
Creekwood Christian Church
2660 Forest Vista Drive in Flower Mound
972-539-2660 | creekwood.org
“Throughout this whole process we have really gained an understanding for and an appreciation for all of our neighbors.” — Becky Ricci, communications director
Islamic Association of Lewisville and Flower Mound
3430 Peters Colony Road in Flower Mound
firstname.lastname@example.org | ialfm.org
“It creates that atmosphere of tolerance and respect that we’ve always longed for.” — Shaheed Luqman, secretary of the board
Congregation Kol Ami
1887 Timber Creek Road in Flower Mound
972-539-1938 | kolami-tx.org
“It’s really, really been neat to see how positive and how respectful of each other everyone is.” — Laurie Appelbaum, vice president of communications
Grace Community Assembly of God
2525 Forest Vista Drive in Flower Mound
972-724-7223 | fmgrace.org
“That’s been a blessing already, just meeting new cultures in town … we’re just excited they included us.” — Richard Plunk, senior pastor
— Ruth Haesemeyer
We are currently a community of nearly 160 families. Add your strength to ours by becoming a member of Congregation Kol Ami.
Your support sustains and adds blessing to Jewish life in Denton County and Jewish Synagogue in Flower Mound
1887 Timber Creek Rd.
Flower Mound, TX 75028