Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Paso a Paso!

Earlier this month I learned a phrase that is quite common among the Dominican folk; frequently I heard the words, "poco a poco" coming out of their mouths.  This means literally, "little by little"; I immediately adopted the phrase to my own growing Spanish vocabulary only to be corrected by another missionary friend that the more correct way of saying this would be "paso a paso"or "step by step", however both phrases are technically correct, (of course my Spanish teacher may have another opinion!)  So now I use both, depending on the mood.  The point is this; little by little, step by step, we are moving ever closer to the realization of the fulfillment of a dream!  Only now, I can say it in Spanish too! (Tambien!)

Today we watched the work crew working on what seemed the most tedious job I have ever seen on any job site; see the video!

 These guys are putting a smooth coat of concrete on the entire structure beginning with the outside.  Later they will move to the inside and do the same.  It adds up to tons, (I guess) of what we would call stucco, they call "panietta" all over the outside and inside of the walls.  Before it is completely dry, the workers smooth coat the panietta with water and sponge, leaving the surface remarkably smooth!

This gives great definition to the phrase "poco a poco" which is used by the Dominicans for just about every job; after-all, it takes so long do do this work!  Take note in the video as you see the co-worker bring more mud to the applicator, two pails at a time...all day!
I'm tired just watching them!
All jesting aside, Laura and I are pleased with the progress the crew is making with the Guest House.  By the end of the month the crews will be finished with the panietta as well as all of the plumbing inside.  Then the crews will move outside again and begin work on the water cistern and the septic tank which need to be dug into the ground and then built.
The first floor of the house will be almost complete by this time; with only windows and doors to add, floor tiling and paint!
I would like to encourage our readers and supporters at this time to consider a donation to these remaining projects, you can join our support team as they raise funds for the pending Mission Trip on April 19, 2012.  Gary and Shannon, Amos and Sarah will be traveling here to help us with some final details for the Guest House...Painting!   Yeaahhhh! (bring your old clothes guys)
There is still room for more people to join this team as I believe there are still flights available for that date!    Please join us as we are encouraged by their pending arrival, it has been many months since we enjoyed close fellowship from our home church!
On March 18, 2012 at ROL Church in Lethbridge after the morning service, anyone who wishes to support this Mission Trip can come to the luncheon at the church.

Thank you in advance for everyone's support!  Of course all of your donations are tax deductible!
Mike and Laura

Sunday, March 4, 2012

NCMS Advocates!

Hello again everyone and bendiciones from sunny D.R.!
Laura and I are well here and I want to use this opportunity to preview another Mission Group whose work is pivotal to the progress and development of some of the people who live in the area on the North Coast of the Dominican Republic.
When Laura and I first met Kim and Josie Pensinger in 2008, we had no idea how God was directing us; how He was establishing His people around us.  The Pensingers hail from San Diego and Vermont, but have spent many years on the Mission Field, working in places like North Bay Ontario, Costa Rica, Buenos Aires Argentina, and now Sosua Dominican Republic.  That first meeting with them seemed very comfortable, even now, looking back, it seems as though we have known them for much longer.
Dominican Advance started almost 6 years ago with the establishment of a Mission outreach here in Sosua; at first Kim and Josie Pensinger worked to develop relationships with other organizations which led to the establishment of a school in a local village near Sosua.  The school in Nazareth was built in 2007 and children began to attend classes that fall.  At first the school started with only three grades; adding a new flock of children each year since.  The education program at the school is based on standards set in place by the Ministry of Education in the D.R.  The fundamental difference in Nazareth is such that most of the children attend school each year with the help of funding from international sponsors.  Each child receives a uniform, books, backpack and school supplies from sponsorship funding on a monthly basis.  The children also receive a meal every day they attend school; the meal program is funded separately from sponsorship.  Nutri-Ninos provides a much needed food supplement as many of the children may only eat once a day at home.  After the successful launch and progress of the school in Nazareth, Dominican Advance was asked to step in and administer education programs at another school which was built nearby in another village.  The school in Paraiso was built by another Canadian Charity called Samaritan Foundation.  S.F. has built many villages surrounding the area providing much needed houses, schools, clinics and trade schools designed to empower the people in their own communities. 
The second school in Paraiso began classes in the fall of 2010 with children up to grade four.  When school began almost 90% of the children had little to no knowledge of the alphabet or numbers.  Today the school educates over 100 children and will add 50 new children each year up until grade 8.
Dominican Advance is now a registered Canadian Charity, incorporating 2 years ago to comply with a requests from a growing Canadian support base.
Today we see God position Dominican Advance to expand the Mission with the construction of a secondary school which will continue the education of all of the children leaving grade 8 from Nazareth and Paraiso.
The secondary school will be built to receive students in the fall of 2014.
Dominican Advance has always been a strong voice for God as they have obediently moved forward with Him.  We have watched from a short distance and stand witness to the blessings Dominican Advance had given to the people of the D.R.  Dominican Advance is bringing more and more teams to the area to administer education programs and other areas of empowering the people. 
Dominican Advance will be starting a capital campaign shortly to raise the necessary funds for the construction of the secondary school.
 Please join us as we acknowledge the importance of continuing the work that God has started within this Ministry.
You can view details about Dominican Advance through their website.

Bless you all as you make your way through another day God has made!