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I ask God to give her and her daughter peace in this house.

Thank you to everyone who joined us on January 26th as we dedicated Unity House 3, in memory of Melissa Dugas Gutierrez – a home built by the faith-based community in Albuquerque.

During the Unity House 3 home dedication the faith community along with the friends and family of Melissa Dugas Gutierrez gathered to celebrate and welcome the family to their new home.

The ceremony began with a blessing from Harris Zeyaee, President of the Islamic Center of New Mexico, who first spoke to the Habitat homeonwer in her native language Dari and then translated in English saying, “I ask God to give her and her daughter peace in this house. This is an opportunity to build wonderful memories here and to be a pillar to grow and help the community around her. In Islam part of what we do is not just do for ourselves, but we help our community and our friends.”

Reverend Tom Hart from Shepherd of the Valley Presbyterian Church also blessed the home saying, “We are connected in so many ways. Connected by this house and this project, by our compassion for other people and for Habitat. This house gives us a better understanding of how God works – through the ordinary things that we do, we have an insight into the amazing things God does.”

Wells Fargo has been a longtime partner with Habitat, granting $1.5 million to the Mesa del Rio project here in Albuquerque. Debi Randall, representing Wells Fargo during the home dedication, said, “Over the past two decades Wells Fargo has donated $180 million to Habitats across the country. To the family moving into this house, I am so happy for you. It’s great that the community can come together – faith based groups, Wells Fargo and Habitat. Welcome to your new home, we wish blessings upon you.”

The homeowner of the Unity 3 house thanked everyone saying, “Unfortunately I was forced to leave my country, but I was blessed to be introduced to the United Nations High Commission on Refugees. Many people who need help do not receive it, but they helped me move to the United States where I have been able to give my daughter a better life. As a single mother I never thought I’d have my own home in the United States. There are not enough ways to say thank you, I am very grateful to you all.”

Lastly, Imam Fazail Ahmad Sheikh from the Islamic Center of New Mexico gave one last blessing, saying, “Allah bless all of us and bless your new home. The best ones are those who serve others. Our responsibility is to take care of each other. Congratulations to everyone for helping. I ask God to bless all of you and put a light in our lives and in our thoughts.”

Jean Werth presents a gift to the Dugas family. The Unity 3 House is named in memory of their daughter, Melissa Dugas Gutierrez.
Miguel, ReStore Manager, also an immigrant to the US, presents a beautiful quilt to the new homeowner of Unity House 3.
The faith community helped build Unity House 3 – through financial contributions and volunteer effort. Pictured LtoR: Reverend Tom Hart from Shepherd of the Valley Presbyterian Church, Imam Fazail Ahmad Sheikh from the Islamic Center of New Mexico , and Harris Zeyaee President of the Islamic Center of New Mexico
Mother and daughter accepting the keys to their new home. After hundreds of hours volunteering to help build her homes and her neighbors homes and learning the responsibilities of becoming a first time homebuyer they were welcomed home during the Unity House 3 dedication.


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