Thrivent partners with local Habitat affiliate
by W. Winston Skinner
Thrivent Financial for Lutherans has a strong connection with Habitat for Humanity and particularly with the local affiliate.
Several representatives from Thrivent took part in the most recent Habitat house blessing at the home of Mildred Johnson on Domineck Street on Aug. 21. Johnson’s home, which was built from the ground up, is part of Thrivent’s partnership with the home ownership ministry.
“This is the sixth we’ve done in four years,” said John Setzer, president of the Coweta Chapter for Thrivent. “We’ve had a great relationship.”
“The first was a house in Grantville,” said Andy Ivey, development director for Newnan-Coweta Habitat for Humanity. “They’re our number one partner.”
“There are not a lot of Lutherans in Coweta County,” Setzer said. He noted all the Habitat-Thrivent houses in the area “have been in Coweta County.
Greg Bickhart, financial consultant for the Greater Atlanta Group for Thrivent, and Charles Anderson, South Atlanta Chapter financial associate, were at the house blessing along with Setzer.
“We’ve have a strong alliance — going back to 2005 — with Habitat,” Bickhart said. The overall project has resulted in the building of 1,809 homes and involved 531,000 volunteers.
The local chapter has not only participated in Habitat builds but in Thrivent Repairs, which makes repairs to homes. One of Johnson’s neighbors had work done through the repair program.
“We feed over 600 people at Thanksgiving through our local chapter,” Setzer said. He said the group also is working with One Roof Ecumenical Outreach.
“Thrivent is a faith-based organization,” Bickhart said. Local chapters “are the eyes and ears of the national organization,” Setzer said.