Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Day 7

Well, our last day of ministry in the DR was a great one. We woke up early and went to the Reformatorio, a detention center for boys ages 14 to 17. We sang, performed our skits, and preached the Word of God to them, and they just drank it in. Most of them prayed to receive Christ at the end of the service.

From there, we went to a high school and ministered to the 9th grade class, and returned again after lunch to minister to a different group in the same school.

Our day was far from over, however. We then visited a small school for deaf children, and ministered to them in sign language. From there, we went to a television studio, and put on a live one-hour TV show that is hosted by a local evangelist. Boy, did our kids get a kick out of that!
After that, we returned to the poor village called Los Rieles (The Rails) to say goodbye to some of the children we are sponsoring and give them toys and presents before we leave.

Tomorrow, we plan to leave La Vega and travel to the capital city in the morning, and stay at the Dominican Fiesta Hotel tomorrow night. Our flight leaves Santo Domingo on Thursday at 12:20 pm.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Days 5 & 6

Day 5: This morning we all got dressed in our Sunday best and went to a downtown church. The church was beautiful, and once again, they loved our songs and skits. In fact, they videotaped the skits and asked for a copy of the soundtracks so they could work on a Dominican version of our skits. I told Chris Cata his theatrical masterpieces were going international!

At 4:00 we attended another service and didn't leave there until 8:00. They know how to do church down here! Pastor Wes preached and I translated his message into Spanish. There were probably 50 people who came forward at the altar call. Praise God!

After the service our kids played and danced around to worship music with all the Dominican children. It was quite a scene.
Day 6: Today was a unique and fun day. We woke up early and loaded up two buses to take a two-hour trip into the mountains. There is a poor village up there called Tireo where we staged another free medical/dental clinic. On the way up the mountain, we saw beautiful plantations of coffee, flowers, and vegetables. We even stopped to buy freshly-picked strawberries. What a treat!
While the medical clinic was running, our team set up shop outside in the street and performed our skits. The crowds loved it. I gave an altar call and had our kids lay hands on those who responded. It was truly powerful.
After lunch at the local pastor's home, we visited the village school and did our performances again. As usual, we were very warmly received.
Please pray for tomorrow, as we have a very busy day of ministry, including a visit to a youth detention center, a TV appearance, and a school for the deaf.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Day 4

Are we halfway done already? It feels like we are just hitting our stride!

This morning half of the team helped out with the free medical clinic that we hosted for a poor community, and the other half continued with the work at the construction site. The boys who worked construction have some sunburned necks!

After lunch we went to a "Dominican Walmart" where we purchased some goodies for ourselves -- the boys bought chips and cookies and the girls bought fruit and clothes!

Tonight's ministry was especially powerful. At 7:00, we gathered on the street of a local neighborhood and set up our sound system and began to sing worship songs in Spanish. Then we performed one of our skits and I preached a message to the passersby and observers that there is only one Name given under heaven by which we must be saved: Jesus! Several prayed to receive Christ at the end.

From there we zoomed over to our 8:00 service (this time inside a church) and blew the doors off with our skits, worship, and testimonies. God was present in a special way, and once again, several people recommited their lives to the Lord at the end of the service.

Tomorrow have two more services, so keep us in your prayers!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Day 3

Some of us woke up tired today, but once we arrived at La Vega Christian School and saw the kids waiting for us in their chapel service, our team sprang into action. This time, we sang songs in English and Spanish and performed two of our world-class skits (the choreography is amazing). Afterward, I shared a brief message on the narrow road vs. the wide road and we memorized Matthew 7:21 (Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven). Sorry the video clip is so brief, but the Internet here is too slow to upload big files.

After chapel, it was recess time and our team accepted the challenge to face the Dominicans in basketball and volleyball. Tim Hulse was very proud of the fact that he dunked the ball for the first time.

Our first day on the construction site worked out great, despite torrential rainfall. Our team worked hard building the foundation of an extension on a local church before the rain forced us inside. Many local village children visited us at the site and made the experience a memorable one.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Day 2

Another great day of ministry in the DR! We woke up early and brought in the day with prayer on the rooftop veranda. The weather has been beautiful: 85 degrees with the occasional cool breeze.

Our schedule today included six different school visits (yes, six!). We received an enthusiastic welcome wherever we went. Ryan Silverstein even addressed the crowds in Spanish! I have heard rave reviews about the food. We definitely have some converts to fresh Dominican rice, beans, and tropical fruit. The coffee is great, too.

All of the kids are healthy and behaving well -- prayer and fasting really does work! Please continue to pray for us. Tomorrow we are looking forward to chapel services in the morning and our first day of construction at the work site in the afternoon.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Day 1

We arrived safely in Santo Domingo at 11:10 am (and so did all our luggage -- thank God), and we departed for the boy's orphanage.
At the orphanage we played with the children, sang songs, performed one of our skits, and ate a typical Dominican lunch: rice, beans, and chicken.
From there, we went to a girl's orphanage and after our service, they performed a skit for us!
We ate dinner back at the Conference Center where we are staying, and now everyone is ready for sleep. Thank you for your prayers!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Final Preparations

Two more days before we leave! We are in high-gear packing and preparing mode. Please pray for our team of 32!