The team of ten left the chill of Canada to arrive in the tropical island of the Dominican Republic. After a 2.5 hr ride through the mountain curves we arrived to the agricultural valley which hosted the city of Bonao. Seven team members began their first experience of their mission trip with Church of the Rock.
We joined Rosa Rosario and Frank DiBari who set up opportunities for us to serve in the city. We had opportunity to join two churches for services, pray for people in the local public hospital as well as engage with people during a medical clinic where Dr. Rosa saw 33 people. Early in the week, we divided the team into teams of 3 and went door to door introducing ourselves and offering prayer. We were pleasantly surprised at the openness of the locals to speak with us. Many pulled out chairs in hospitality. We saw people freed of pain, and healed with the ability to move limbs that were unable to do so minutes earlier. Praise the Lord!
Mid week, we again went to the same doors to invite them to the Medical clinic. Later, we went a third time to invite them to a family outreach event at the Church of God of Prophecy, which I refer to affectionately as the big church, (it’s a big building).
On two occasions we went to an area of the city called the Barrio de los Padres. It is here we set up for street ministry to kids where we shared a bible study, some crafts, games and other activities. A number of these kids get transported weekly to the big church for church, but there were a number of them that had no church affiliation. We had close to 40 kids join us, not including the teens and parents who came out to see what was going on. We gathered the women to have a short women’s devotion and craft. This ministry location was the favourite of a number of the team members.
On our last night, we had planned to host a film night of the children’s version of the Jesus Film, in Spanish of course. It had been a tough week, with many plans falling through, challenges of communication as well as low local church member participation. I confess I wasn’t sure what would happen. Here we had gone around and invited the locals to attend, what would happen if the local church didn’t attend?
God showed up! The local church was on time and ready to serve! David brought three van loads of people from Barrio de los Padres, totalling 32 people. People from the neighbourhood who we had prayed with, played with, came for the film. We ran out of seats! We had a large response to the call for prayer after the salvation message. We handed out 68 bands for the salvation bracelets. The church leaders felt there were at least 30 people there they had never met before. Praise the Lord!
This night made all the struggle worth it for me! The heart of the people, their hospitality towards us, and openness of sharing their problems and worries with strangers, was such a gift.
Thank you for praying for us as well as supporting us to go to Bonao. We were changed. And we hope the people there, saw something about Jesus.
Praying for Church Of The Rock leadership, volunteers, congregation, TV/internet, mission teams & campus ministries. Always enjoy your western tour services when you come to Harvest City Church, Regina. Looking forward to next tour. Pastor Mark – praying for you.