Sunday, June 12, 2005

On the Waters of the World

Correct Craft Posted by Hello

Today, I was saddened to hear that Walter Meloon passed away at age 89. I had the honor of meeting Walt at a Fellowship of Companies for Christ International meeting in the fall of 1984. Walt was asking why membership in FCCI was dropping; when informed that several members were going through tough financial times during the real estate downturn among other things, he organized a retreat to serve those who were experiencing business pressures with encouragement of God's faithfulness with Correct Craft.

Via my local board involvement with FCCI, I saw first hand as a volunteer at these yearly retreats how faith, prayer, encouragement, Almighty God's grace and redemption snatched the participants from the pits of despair and in some cases, suicide. Walter Meloon was not only a role model and mentor, but a living legacy on the waters of the world.
PDF story

Turnaround Ministries* exists today because of Walter's radical generosity to practice the numerous "one anothers" in Scripture i.e. "carry each other's burdens." Galatians 6:2 He served as an encouragement to business owners to operate their businesses using Biblical principles. Today Correct Craft, the leader in pleasure boats, is better known for their Christian witness and missions support around the world; more so than manufacturing the excellent line of Nautiques boats and popularizing the sport of waterskiing.

ORLANDO, FL - The oldest of three brothers, Walter O. Meloon, was just a child when his father Walter C. Meloon moved the family from New Hampshire to Florida and started the Florida Variety Boat Company in 1925. While upholding the tradition established by his father of "building boats to the glory of God," W.O. always dreamed of great things and was instrumental in the company becoming part of organized waterskiing.

Their story is told in a DVD Generous Giving: Experience the Joy!!:

Walter and Ralph Meloon were brothers in the family business Correct Craft, a pleasure-boat manufacturing company. After a series of struggles in their contract with the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, the company finally was pushed into bankruptcy when an inspector refused to approve an entire shipload of boats. The government inspectors' measures were meant to thwart a company whose principles prohibited bribes, and had already created significant costs by sending boats back to the factory for reworking. Though a court canceled 80 percent of their company's debt, the Meloon brothers knew that they had to repay every cent anyway. Thus, over the course of 18 years, they tracked down each one of their 228 creditors and paid off their debts. Walter Meloon even was convicted to forgive the government inspector. Their actions were a witness to several of what running a business God's way truly entailed.

Giving Warriors: Inspirational Stories of Men and Women Who Experienced the Joy of Giving Posted by Hello

* Turnaround Ministries "...began in 1984, after brothers Walter and Ralph Meloon had spent a number of years telling how they guided their boat-building company, Correct Craft, back from bankruptcy. Hearing how Walt and Ralph had spent 25 years going beyond their legal obligations to pay back their creditors 100 percent (convinced that it would honor God to do so) inspired other people to do the same. The Meloons wanted to do more to help fellow Christians in financial trouble, so they paid for a weekend retreat in the Adirondacks and invited 10 struggling Christian businessmen and their wives to pray and talk. That was the first Turnaround Weekend, and since that time, Turnaround Ministries has provided temporary refuge and encouragement to over 3000 hurting Christians in business."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I and my wife attended a Turn Around Weekend 11 years ago and I also wanted to extend my condolences and appreciation for such a wonderful Christian man. We greatly benefited from the encouragement and fellowship of that weekend. My sister just sent me a humerous email that I know Walter would enjoy. Here goes...

In the year 2005, the Lord came unto Noah, who was now living in the United States, and aid, "Once again, the earth has become
wicked and over-populated and I see the end of all flesh before me.

Build another Ark and save two of every living thing along with a few good humans."

He gave Noah the blueprints, saying, "You have six months to
build the Ark before I will start the unending rain for 40 days and 40 nights".

Six months later, the Lord looked down and saw Noah weeping in his yard.... but no ark.

"Noah"! , He roared, "I'm about to start the rain! Where is the Ark?"

"Forgive me, Lord," begged Noah. "But things have changed. I
needed a building permit. I've been arguing with the inspector
about the need for a sprinkler system. My neighbors claim that
I'll violate the neighborhood zoning laws by building the Ark in my yard and exceeding the height limitations. We had to go to
the Development Appeal Board for a decision. Then the Department of
Transportation demanded a bond be posted for the future costs of moving power lines and other overhead obstructions, to clear the passage for the Ark's move to the sea. I argued that the sea would be coming to us, but
they would hear nothing of it.

Getting the wood was another problem. There's a ban on cutting local trees in order to save the spotted owl. I tried to convince the environmentalists that I needed the wood to save the owls. But no go!

When I started gathering the animals, I got sued by an animal
rights group. They insisted that I was confining wild animals
against their will. As well, they argued the accommodation was too
restrictive and it was cruel and inhumane to put so many animals in a confined space.

Then the EPA ruled that I couldn't build the Ark until they'd
conducted an environmental impact study on your proposed flood.
I'm still trying to resolve a complaint with the Human Rights
Commission on how many minorities I'm supposed to hire for my
building crew.

Also, the trades unions say I can't use my sons. They insist I have to hire only Union workers with Ark building experience.

To make matters worse, the IRS seized all my assets, claiming
I'm trying to leave the country illegally with endangered species.

So, forgive me, Lord, but it would take at least ten years for me to
finish this Ark."

Suddenly the skies cleared, the sun began to shine, and a
rainbow stretched across the sky.

Noah looked up in wonder and asked, "You mean, You're not going to destroy the world?".

"No," said the Lord. "The government beat me to it."