Monday, July 23, 2012

GEN 1:9 - On the Way to the Mission Field

[Note - we have no wifi or internet access. Telephone calls are expensive. So communication is difficult and rare, but we'll try to post as often as we can! Thanks for understanding. ]

Excited, sleepy, apprehensive, curious, scared, shy, exuberant, relieved - all these emotions and more were being felt by the team as we boarded our flight at 7 am Friday morning.  There are 23 of us from Hope Chapel's Generation 1:9 Youth Group and we're finally on our way to the Dominican Republic. We were stunned that we ended up checking 17 bags of VBS supplies and baseball equipment! All of our personal gear was carry-on so we had the room. We made our connection in Miami with about 15 minutes to spare and arrived on time in Santo Domingo, the capital of the Dominican Republic (DR).
Resting after a long day.

HOT! Well, we could say it's hot and humid, but we've decided as a team not to complain. We are in this boat together and we're going to work to make this time in the DR a great success. So, as a team, we'll work to make the boat better every day - be friendly, help one another, be patient, be flexible - more than flexible, we'll be fluid, as changes will come every day. DR Rocks!

Our dormitory is the 3rd floor of a Methodist church. Lots of bunks, good bathrooms, and lots of windows. There is no air conditioning, but there' s a good breeze and lots of fans. We have a common room/dining room on the 2nd floor. Oh, speaking of dining - OMG! The food! It is amazing terrific! We've eaten beans and rice and a kind of spanish rice and a kind of BBQ chicken and some amazing beef-tips, salad and the fruit! Wow, the fruit is the sweetest and tastiest fruit! Utterly amazing, the food here.

Castle of Diego Colon
Our schedule is pretty full this week, but we'll have some play time too. Friday we spent the day unpacking, figuring out how the toilets and showers work (you have to be here) and then we were going to play baseball nearby, but it started pouring rain. That turned out to be a good thing, since it lowered the temperature and allowed us a good night's sleep.

Saturday, we prepared to work with the local Missionaries - Charlie & Darla Finocchiaro - and their youth group. We prepared some Spanish songs and reviewed our Spanish words and prayed a lot. Our task was to be friendly and learn about them and hopefully give them something that would move their spirits toward God. Well, Christiana and Candice both gave really good words of testimony and encouragement. Then Charles and Bill both gave a short message on how to live for God. We did our songs with Farrell and Collin and Whitney leading the music, and that was fun! Then, their youth band played and it rocked! Woot! So much fun and God was in the house!! We made lots of friends and we all seemed to just really click! Great things are happening.

We're ready to take the DR for Jesus!
Sunday we were able to go to a new church that the Finocchiaro's are planting in a poor community called El Cafe. They have rented a small house and are starting with reaching out to the children. We did a Sunday School and many neighborhood children came to meet the "gringos" and to play, sing and hear a story about Jesus. It was wonderful. We'll be working with some of these kids on Tuesday and Wednesday. We're praying that they will understand the good news.

After that we went to church with the Finocchiaro's and then went out to explore Santo Domingo. We went to see the Castle of Diego Colon, Christopher Columbus' son, who was governor of the DR in 1492. Lots of beautiful sights of the city and friendly people. It was a good day to relax and prepare for our service day on Monday - painting the park the El Cafe community. We want to be the hands and feet of Jesus there.

Team 1 of Gen. 1:9 DR Mission
More to come! Thanks for praying for us. We're hoping to see lives changed and our own worlds rocked!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thank You!

Thank You Hope Chapel, family, friends and all of our supporters! We have raised all the necessary funds and will be leaving for the Dominican Republic bright and early tomorrow morning!

This is the first time Generation 1:9 has ever been in the mission field. There are a number of students on this trip who have never been outside of the United States!  Please continue to support us in prayer as we travel and minister.

Here are 3 simple ways you can pray:

1. Safety - We have taken all the necessary precautions, but would love for you to pray for safety.

2. Spiritual Impact - Please pray that the work our team does has an eternal impact while in the D.R. Pray that people in the D.R experience life change through Christ. And pray that our students experience life change as well.

3. Blessing - Pray that we are able to be a blessing to the local missionaries who are hosting us. We do not want to be a stress factor to them. Pray that they feel like we are an addition to their ministry!

I am sure you can think of plenty of other ways to pray, so please remain faithful to praying for us while we are ministering!