Grant and Gina Hasty, who have served as Mission Service Corps missionaries with the Kentucky Baptist Convention for the past dozen years, continue asking God to show them the next step in their ministry journey.
They have a way of turning small blessings into huge ones and that well describes the latest project put in front of them called the Light Community. On June 26, they celebrated the ongoing construction of the tiny homes being built for the mission.
“It was a milestone for us although we’re not quite open for residents,” Hasty said. “But we’re extremely close. It’s been a five-year process.”
The end result will be 11 homes, an office and a laundry building constructed on a 13-acre development that is also a working farm. The homes will be for individuals coming out of rehabilitation and those who are homeless and in need of a safe place for themselves or their families.
The homes are truly tiny, 240 square feet to 560 square feet. The development has one-bedroom loft homes and two-bedroom homes with two sets of bunk beds. The homes take anywhere from three to six weeks to build, he said.
Building for the community
Hasty is also the pastor of Crossroads Community Baptist Church in Stearns, Kentucky. He said the church will host 14 missions teams this summer.
In McCreary County, one of the poorest counties not only in Kentucky but in the U.S., Crossroads Community Baptist strives to meet the community’s spiritual and physical needs. It operates the Lord’s Café, which provides food through a restaurant ministry and distributions.
‘Where it all began’
After exploring a homeless shelter at a motel, the idea of the community village presented itself to the Hastys through a family in Austin, Texas, who had started a similar operation.
“That’s kind of where it all began,” Hasty said. “We spent three hours with the founder of that organization.”
Financially, the church carries the mortgage on the property, but it has set up a separate nonprofit and board that will handle management of the Light Community, Hasty said.
“Everything building wise has come through donations and volunteers,” he said. “We’re not looking to get all the houses done at one time. There’s a two-bedroom cabin where my family lives on the property. We will have ministry 24/7 with people in our backyard. I wanted to go faster, but we’ve learned a lot and changed and tweaked through the years.”
While there are no mortgage payments for those who live in the Light Community, it’s not free. Residents will work on the farm while getting their lives back together.
“You’re going to want to have help to live here,” he said. “There will be random drug testing and farm work to do. It’s a working farm. We decided, as a board, we’re not going to have a one-year stint. People can stay for as long as they need to be here. The dynamics of where we’re at in the county, housing is hard to find.”
Hasty prays those who come to live at Light Community will get their lives back on track both physically and spiritually.
EDITOR’S NOTE–This story was originally written by Mark Maynard and published by Kentucky Today.