Standing on the Shoulders of Giants

June 6, 2015 by Forrest Fowler


“If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants”. This is a 12th century metaphor popularized as a quote in a letter written by Sir Isaac Newton. It simultaneously shows humility and gives credit to the work and discoveries of one's predecessors.

Amor is celebrating it’s 35th anniversary this year. Since it’s founding in 1980, nearly 350,000 volunteers have built more than 18,400 homes and helped plant more than 350 churches.

How did this happen? By standing on the shoulders of giants. A quick review of the history of Amor’s staff and interns reveals that more than 260 people that have worked at Amor! That number doesn’t include the thousands of spring break and summer volunteers that have served with us. Whether their service was just for a day or has been going on for 33 years, each person's contribution has added to the ministry of Amor.

Steve Horrex came as a participant with his church from Canada. Because of that experience, he joined Amor’s staff and designed the houses that Amor now builds. Steve came on staff with Amor in 1982 and like a bad (Canadian) penny, we just can't seem to get rid of him; he is still on staff with us today.

In 1986, Dean and Amy Mathis brought a team of students that would be Amor’s first summer intern team. Hundreds of college-age students have spent their summers learning what it means to be servant leaders and gaining life experience as short-term missionaries. Dean and Amy also helped dream of and introduce Amor’s Family Camp. This year Family Camp is celebrating it’s 20-year anniversary and Dean and Amy are the Directors.

Bob Brewer was a summer intern in 1992 and joined the staff shortly after that. Bob dreamed of and wrote our ‘Mission Control’ computer program that we still use to this day to track all of our mission trips, projects, invoicing, and donor databases.

Darrel Larson researched and implemented the use of GPS tracking for all of our projects. Moving us away from the endless reams of paper, hundreds of multi colored highlighters and hand drawn maps that were used previously saved hundreds of staff hours and created a permanent record of our house builds.

Mark Lovelace has spent hundreds of hours using his electrical, engineering, and construction skills to improve our offices and camps. 

These are just a few of the highlights of the contributions of Amor staff and volunteers to the mission of Amor. There are hundreds of other stories like these, all equally, if not more important. One day volunteers that help with group check in and provided a smile, guide trip leaders through the check in process, and make them feel like they are being welcomed into our home are just as important. No contribution is insignificant!

Amor is successful because of the people that believe in the mission of Amor. THANK YOU!

As we celebrate our 35th anniversary we invite you to join us for our Amor Alumni Trip this summer. Come back and celebrate with us doing that one thing that brought us all together: building a house. We’ll laugh, reminisce, eat tacos, and of course, change the life of a family forever.

Can’t make it for the Alumni Trip? Check out the Amor 3 Day Trips that are offered throughout the year. They are perfect for individuals and small groups.

We would love to hear your stories of how your experience with Amor has impacted your life. The success of Amor is because of people like you. You are the giants on whose shoulders we stand.

Amor Alumni Trip

Topics: Participant Stories