Earlier on this month i took one of my bi-yearly trips to the Dominican Republic to visit our campus out in the Caribbean. 3 years ago we sent a small team from Ensenada to go and plant a campus in the town of San Pedro, in the south east part of the island.
It's great to go back every time and see the great work that is happening there. currently they are building approximately 25 Homes of Hope each year, along with hosting numerous other outreach teams, mission adventure programs and working in the Haitian refugee communities. They have also established a number of other ministries feeding and educating the street kids in San Pedro
While i was there, i had the opportunity to build a new home for this family. Considering their current living situation, they were an amazingly joyful family and were so excited to be getting a new home. Their middle daughter LuLu was an orphan with Cerebral Palsy, and had been left on the families doorstep as a baby. She was now about 13 years old, and all her life had never had a bed of her own. We made sure that there was space in the house for Lulu's own bed. We even painted her name on it to stop her sisters from using it. At the end there was not a dry eye amongst us, neither the team or the family could hold them back.
At the dedication ceremony, the family decided to sing for us, which is something that ive never experienced before. HERES THE VIDEO
Next we went to visit Pastor Mendoza. An amazing guy who received a Home of Hope a couple of years ago. He told us his story, about him and his wife spending 7 years sleeping on a mattress on the floor, with no money for a bed, let alone a decent house. Although he really wanted a house of his own, his bigger passion was to build a church for people to worship, a community center and a school for the local kids, as there was nothing available in the area.
After receiving a new home fro YWAM, he cried and said "this new house has enabled me to dream again"
He now has his house, which he also opens as a community center, and next door is a small schoolhouse/Church where him and his wife school 50+ students each day.
Theres something about music in the DR, as the children decided to sing for us.. Check out the Video HERE
What's more, the Pastor has now bought the lot of land behind his home. This is for a bigger school and community center, to enable him to help even more people.
So all in, it was an amazing trip. I was blown away by peoples hearts, peoples stories and peoples amazing generosity. Ive come back a changed man. Again...
Thanks for being part of my life and for helping change lives like, Pastor Mendoza, who is now carrying it forward and changing many lives in his community.