BAD NEWS / GOOD NEWS
Rosie (Nordby) Dewey
Lord certainly moves in mysterious ways", was Rosie's daughter's
reaction when she heard what was happening at the historic Mount Pisgah Presbyterian Church
where her parents attend in Roslyn, Washington. Northwest
Uuniversity Alum, Rosie (Nordby) Dewey, had been asked by the Pastor to
head up a $250,000 church fund-raising project to repair the
deteriorating foundation of the 108 year old church building.
Mount Pisgah Presbyterian Church was organized with 11 members on March 28, 1886, when Washington State was still a territory.
For the first 14 years the congregation met in various locations around
the area until an opportunity arose for them to purchase property and
build at the corner of First & Idaho Streets in Roslyn. The
site was initially purchased for $1.00 from N.W.I. Company, and the
church was built at a cost of $3,840.64. The first meeting
in the new building was held on March 26, 1900. For more than a
century, through good times, and hard times the church has been a
constant witness for Christ in Roslyn.
The severe weather in the
Northwest over this past Christmas and New Years had dropped 2 to 3
feet of snow on the east side of the Cascades. Then suddenly, in
early January, the temperature rose dramatically and the area was
inundated with heavy rains. On January 7th many folks were taken by surprise as
flood waters rushed in overnight. The old Mount Pisgah Church was
hit hard. The basement was flooded, and the already weak
foundations were severely damaged. The flood water problem was
complicated by the fact that a diesel tank near the church broke
loose spilling it's contents and saturating the ground with diesel.
This turned the problem into a HAS MAT situation. Rosie said,
"I was down there working the day after the flood, and my hands hurt
for a couple of days because of digging in the diesel". The
church can no longer be used until the restoration work has been done.
The "Mysterious Ways" amidst this challenge facing the
Mount Pisgah congregation is that the church had flood insurance.
"In a nutshell", Rosie said, "The foundation is going to be
completely replaced by insurance as a result of the flood. Who
could have ever thought that God would work that way?" Rosie's
husband, Neil is heading up the restoration project which is expected
to take about 9 months to complete.
On January 24, 2009 Rosie wrote with an update:
have started the restoration of the church, as well as the Manse
(Parsonage). They will be putting in a new foundation (and
lifting the church), putting in 2 new furnaces, painting the exterior
of the building, fixing all the cracks in the main sanctuary, and
replacing all carpets (they can't be cleaned because of the
diesel). They are also pouring a concrete floor to help
stabilize the building. Previously it was just dirt in the
basement. So, it wasn't usable space. It was just musty
smelling and cold. The only thing down there was yard equipment
(snowblower, lawn mower, etc) and storage of things that wouldn't be
damaged because of the dirt.
lifting the church and pouring a concrete floor, we will be able to put
a Christian Education Center downstairs for Sunday school rooms, plus
bathrooms. Of course, Insurance won't be covering the
improvements (SS rooms, bathrooms, women's work room for missions).
But ... with the restoration of the Parsonage, we are thinking
seriously about selling it and using the funds for the improvements for
the church. So, in addition to getting the church stable and
foundation restored, we will do a major improvement project to upgrade