We spent a majority of the time at a local church where we played with the local children while their parents were at work. In the Dominican, children are often left alone all day, and the church serves as a refuge for them.
The Dominican is located on the same island as Haiti, and historically the two groups hate each other. usually the church has two separate services to prevent fighting. Because of unfortunate circumstances, one pastor was not able to come. Moise combined the Haitian and Dominican services. He preached in Creole, a Dominican translated to Spanish, and an American translated to English. The message was about community and how even though we are all different in color, origin, economic status, and more, we can all come together as one body through what we did have in common: the love of God. We took communion together. At the end, we visited with each other, saying "God bless you" in the the native tongue of the person we were addressing. It was truly beautiful to see cultures that technically should hate each other choose to love each other. That message remains my favorite.
The American worship
(yes that is a purple Hannah Montana guitar)
The Haitian worship
The Dominican worship
The pastor of the church, Moise, spoke three languages: Creole, Spanish, and English. He taught himself all three. He dedicates his life to the God, the church, and his community. He was the most Christ-like person I have ever had the privilege of getting to know and learn from.
This was an intern for the church. He aspires to be a pastor when he gets older.
This is Renee, one of our amazing translators on the trip. He was so welcoming and kind. He truly was dedicating to improving his home land.
We painted the church as a gift for Pastor Moise for the church's 10 year anniversary.
1 Peter 4:8 Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
This was my best friend on the trip, Jennifer. She clung onto me from the very first day of bible study, and we had a great time together from braiding hair, blowing bubbles, painting faces, coloring, eating, and learning about God's love.
1 John 3:16-18 This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.