A day in the life - Greg Miller
A Day in The Life Of Greg Miller, Facility Manager
What is a day in the life for Greg during COVID?
Having been the Facility Manager here at NorthPark Presbyterian for over seven years now, I have seen lots of challenges, but nothing to compare with this Covid-19 pandemic. It has affected my life both here at the church and at home. I am lucky that I get to come to the church every workday to do my job, as it is hard to maintain a church from home! During these times I have done a lot of jobs that normally I would try to get done in the summer months when the day school was out, but now I have nothing but time to do them! I started out by stripping the wax from every tile floor in the building (day school rooms included) and then applying six coats of new wax. I then had the floor in the Narthex area by the Fellowship Hall entrance raised with a special urethane injection system as it had sunk over the years and was causing cracks in the walls and tiles to fall off in the bathrooms. Carpet cleaning, multiple minor repairs and several HVAC (the air conditioning) repairs, plus overseeing the crew repairing and installing the new organ pipes and electronics has kept me busy.
But the thing that has occupied the most time and brain power (of which there was little to start with!), has been the response to, precautions and planning during the Covid-19 crisis. There have been so many things to address, such as the search for supplies including masks and gloves and now the purchase of long-term health items such as touchless hand sanitizer stands and electrostatic disinfectant sprayers that hospitals and clinics are using. The church has done studies on air movement through rooms, and I have measured and calculated room capacities using safe distancing guidelines. It has been really stressful trying to keep up with the guidelines as they keep changing, but the safe return to the church is always my number one priority. On an upside, we have added a state of the art 4K camera system in the Sanctuary. When we return to live Sunday services, there will be people still unsure about coming back or traveling. We’ll be able to offer the live services streaming over the internet so no one will have to miss the services! We will also be able to see who is dozing!!
What do you miss most during COVID?
Just like all of you, even though I am here at the church, I am missing the energy and experience of us all being together in person. Nicole, Martica, Stuart, Louis and Tinsley have done a tremendous job in presenting a great worship service, and the Virtual Coffee Hours have helped, but it does not replace the “live” experience.
What has been the biggest challenge?
Personally, it has been tough but with just enough joyous experiences to make it bearable. My wife, Susan, and I have been able to see our three grandkids (with a fourth on the way!) but in limited doses. The pandemic has hit home on several fronts as one of my son-in-laws is an Emergency Doctor at Parkland Hospital, and my oldest daughter is a Brain Injury Rehab Doctor at Baylor, Scott and White, so to them there is no “hoax” going on. Then my other son-in-law lost his job as a Safety Inspector due to the shutdown of his employer.
Who has been your hero during this time?
What has amazed me most during these times has been the separating of the wheat from the chaff. While our government leaders have argued and bickered, we have seen amazing people rise and become our heroes. Here at the church we have had the food drives, the greenhouse tomatoes, the Casa de Vida on-line sessions, and so much more to help those in need. My fellow staffers have worked so hard to provide ministries and programs for those who are suffering and are scared. Our healthcare heroes put their lives at risk to help others. Our workers in the transportation and food industries that have kept us supplied and fed are heroes. There are so many others to thank, but it assures me that a true God is in charge, and we will survive these times if we are faithful (and wear a mask!).
Where are you spending your time? Who are you at home with?
If I am not here at the church, I’m usually at home with Susan and our two dogs. The last couple of months we have spent a lot of time taking care of my mom after her stroke and preparing for her to move in with us through at least this Covid crisis. We have watched a lot of British series on Netflix and Amazon, and I follow my Southampton Saints playing proper “football” English style! Often you can catch me playing one of my guitars, though not well! But the biggest pleasure is when we are with our grand kids (and their parents!).
Lastly, thank you for trusting me with your beautiful facility. This is my ministry and my main concern has been, and will continue to be, that everyone is able to worship in a place that is safe and comfortable.