Happy New Year! May God bless you with a fabulous 2011!
We wanted to update you on a family that just arrived at Martha’s Vineyard. Please pray for Ken and Becky Harris. They came down from south of Dayton, Ohio for a Christmas vacation. While they were here, Ken became sick- developed a pneumococcal pneumonia He is on a ventilator at Sacred Heart and is very sick. Becky will be staying with us for some time. She tells us he is expected to have a tracheostomy procedure next week to help keep the secretions more easily suctioned out of his lungs. He may also have to have other tubes put in to help with the draining process. His two children will be with us also this weekend before returning to their families up north. Ken’s brother is also here visiting. We know Becky would really appreciate the prayers. She and Ken have been married for 42 years and had saved a long time for this vacation. This was not the way they wanted this to go. The doctors are fairly positive in his prognosis, but it is going to be a long haul.
Thank you all in advance for praying for this family.
We also wanted to let you know about the first ever Martha’s Vineyard Poker Run. This will be an amazing motorcycle ride that will benefit Martha’s Vineyard. It will also help get the word out and give us more opportunity to minister to others. So please mark August 27, 2011 at 9am on your calendar. We’ll send out more details soon.
Welcome back to the blog. We have a few things to share with you guys.
First – The Harris Family: Ken Harris and his wife were coming to our area on vacation and while he was here, he got really sick. The good news is that he is doing wonderful! His family was able to stay at Martha’s Vineyard awhile when he was in the hospital. They have now moved him closer to home (Ohio) and is doing really well in the rehab hospital there. We talked to the family a couple of days ago and if all continues to go well, the doctors at thinking about removing his trach very soon. God is so good! As we hear more from the family, we will let you all know.
Second – A Prayer Request: We have had so many wonderful volunteers at the Vineyard. Things would not have gotten done so quickly without your help. THANK YOU AGAIN!!! One of our awesome volunteer families is in need of our prayers. Shawn and Summer have cooked, cleaned, sanded, painted and worked outside at Martha’s Vineyard. Please pray for Shawn. While Shawn was receiving dialysis yesterday (Friday, Feb. 11), he had a massive heart attack. He is currently in ICU at Baptist Hospital in Pensacola and things are very up and down for him right now. He is receiving excellent care but still has a very long road ahead of him. The last report I heard was that he had some minor internal bleeding, was on a vent, has had a ton of tests run and now we are waiting on results from the cardiologist and neurologist to see what happens next. He is unresponsive as of now, but the doctors are taking him off some medication and doing a dialysis treatment to see if they could get him awake and re-evaluate the situation. We will keep you updated on what we find out. Please also keep Summer in your prayers- for strength, patience and hope.
Thank you all again for your continued prayers for these families and for others that come our way. God bless!
Spring/ Summer 2011
It has been quite a while since we have sent out an update and we are so very sorry for that. As you will read later in this update, the house has been full of activity. We are so excited to fill you in on the fun and adventures over the last few bit and share with you news of what’s to come.
With the help of many volunteers, prayer support and financial support, Martha’s Vineyard has been open for guests two weeks shy of a year now! Wow! Where has the time gone?! So here is what’s been happening… The first couple months of service were a little slow with only a family staying every couple of weeks. God opened the doors, the word got out to the hospitals about the ministry and now we have had 35 families stay with us. There were even points that we had to turn families away because the inn was full. That was really hard. Our guest families have stayed between three or four days and six weeks (the longest so far). Most of the families are not from the Florida panhandle area. So far, they have traveled from Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia, Alabama, Minnesota, Oklahoma, Mississippi, North Carolina, Indiana, Louisiana, Georgia, the southern part of Florida and Washington, D.C. They have come to support their family members who are in the hospital for heart attacks, serious surgeries, falls leading to head bleeds, cancer, motorcycle accidents and auto accidents. We currently have the Hodge family staying with us. They are from Vernon, FL (about 200 miles from Pensacola). Mr. Hodge is in the hospital following surgery complications. Please pray for his healing and for peace for his wife as she stays at the Vineyard.
We have been so blessed by the prayer support of churches, you and your families. Thank you so much for joining us in ministry. Thank you also to the people who have donated their time and resources to continuation of this dream of Martha’s Vineyard. Thank you to the CMA member who made a donation to continue with house updates. Thank you to the Seratoma Community Club who made a donation and pledged their community support. Thank you to the groups from First Baptist Church who have helped with donations and yard updates. Thank you also to Susan, Pat and Candy who watched over the house for us while we took a long weekend away. We feel extremely blessed to be able to run Martha’s Vineyard and pray that God will continue to bless you all as well. Above all, we are so thankful to God for opening the door for many ministry opportunities, conversations and chances to help people in the Pensacola area.
Also, we wanted to take this opportunity to fill you in the Martha’s Vineyard Poker Run. Many details are still in the works- as far as distance, route and starting time- but we will be doing a motorcycle ride on Saturday, August 27, 2011 that will end at Martha’s Vineyard. It will be a great day of riding, fellowship and an opportunity for us to say thank you. We will update soon with ride details. Hope you can join us on this adventure. Please pray that God will be in the middle of all the plans for this day.
On a separate note… as we celebrate our freedom in America, let us also join in celebrating our freedom in Christ. God gave the biggest sacrifice for each of us and we pray that over this holiday weekend, you can take a moment to thank Him for freedom. Please also continue to pray for our troops overseas who are fighting daily for the freedoms we have.
God bless and thank you again for your continued support. Hope to see you soon!
What a time it has been lately! We have had some of the most amazing guests staying at the house. Estelle, our current house guest, has been here awhile while her husband is recovering from surgery and going thru therapy. (They live a few hours away.) She is a continuous source of laughter and has even taught us how to fry rabbit. If anyone would like to try some, please let me know! Please continue to pray for his recovery and for her too.
At the end of this month, we were blessed to have a poker run done in Martha’s Vineyard’s honor. It was amazing to see so many bikers ride on a hot day to help people they will probably never meet. (There are pictures on the photo page of this website.) The ride began at Harley Davidson of Pensacola (www.pensacolaharley.com). Many CMA people came out to help register bikes, pray over the bikes and pass out information about the Vineyard. The bikes left the Harley store and went to Santino’s Pizza in Pace (www.santinospizza.net), Redline Motorcycles (www.redlinemotorcycles.ning.com), Lost Treasure Grill (www.losttreasuregrill.com) and ended up at Eagles Talon (www.eaglestalonriders.com) for a cook out and concert by BULLETPROOF. Even though it was extremely warm outside, we had over 50 bikes and a few riders participate in the ride and then a few more people setting up and getting things ready at Eagles Talon. It was such a blessing to see so many people help out this wonderful cause. We do want to say a special thank you to Chris and Dave who put so much time and energy into the creation of this event. A special thank you also goes out to all of the sponsors listed above and to our fellow CMA members who helped out. We couldn’t have done the ride without you all. Above all, thank you Lord for keeping the riders safe, giving the volunteers a spirit of love to share and for fulfilling this dream of Martha’s Vineyard. In the week following the ride, we received a check from the ride for over a thousand dollars! This will help us help others in so many ways. Thank you to all those that participated and helped with this event.
In closing, here is a special note from Dennis Tackett:
“Marty and I would like to thank you all, from the bottom of our hearts, to your hearts. I know some of you worked for weeks, probably months on the poker run. That Saturday, despite the heat, you worked like troopers for the Lord. May I say “thank you” also on behalf of all those suffering families who will find shelter, food and “ears to listen” and hearts to care over the remaining years of our lives. Much, much, much happened on Saturday. People who may have been un-saved saw Christ in His children. Groups of different races and backgrounds came together. A man on a cane came from Foley with his son and daughter-in-law because they thought it was a “worthy-cause”. And, the thing that really touches us is the fact that Martha Rouse’s legacy lives on. Overall, we again saw living, working, serving proof of Paul’s inspired Word that says, “All things come together for good to those who love the Lord and who are call according to His purpose.” In the words so frequently spoken by Steve Rouse, “Were it not for the death of my wife, Martha, there would be no Martha’s Vineyard.”
“Lord, we praise you first and foremost for Jesus, your Son, whom you loved and in whom You were well pleased, and who you sent to Earth to save all mankind. We thank you for new life, abundant life and eternal life. And today, specifically, we thank you for fellow soldiers who have hearts for and after you. Lord, please bless Maranatha Riders with continued growth for Kingdom building; bless its families and meet each of their needs today. And Lord, please continue to send to each of us hurting, suffering, lost people that we might tell them how wonderful our Father is. In Jesus’ name. . . “