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Our Mission Trip Day 1

10 August 2012

I had the fortunate experience of actually writing our blog for our church's mission trip to the Dominican Republic. As a scientist, not a medical professional, it wasn't clear to me where I could best serve the Lord through my talents. Turns out communicating with the U.S. and documenting the trip was enough. For the next few days I'll be sharing some of the blog posts with you so that you may catch a glimpse of what God is capable of when a willing group of people come together. I hope that you enjoy reading it as much as we enjoyed living it.

Day 1
This is the Air I Breathe...
Airport in Santo Domingo courtesy of A. Roebuck
I am writing you retrospectively since I have been unable to update the blog since we left the U.S. We made it! After a very long day of traveling, we finally landed in the Dominican Republic. We were picked up at the airport by Doug, Arrhenius (the high school principal) and his 5 year old daughter Rose Mariel. Stepping out of the airport we were met with temperatures and humidity akin to Nashville about two weeks ago. No surprise there. But we were blessed by the transportation that was provided for us to the camp, a huge tour bus with air conditioning! In fact, it was our last blast of air conditioning to date.

From the aiport it was around an hour and half to the camp through the city of Santo Domingo. Tropical colored buildings lined the busy streets. There are no traffic lights, sort of whoever gets there first type of system. There were so many people walking and selling things on the street corners. Anything from meat to the most beautiful fruit and even shoes! My personal favorite were the local vendors that chased customers into the grocery store waving their green lettuce and other vegetables in their faces. About half way through our journey it began to rain. Not just a little, it was buckets full nearly flooding the streets in some places!

Fortunately, the rain ceased just as we were getting our luggage out of the bus. We were weary and sweaty not to mention very hungry because most of us had just been snacking since breakfast. The 14 women are staying together in a dorm above the kitchen/cafteria in room with 16 bunked twin beds reminescent of camp. The men are in a similar building but on the first floor on the other side of the camp near the basketball courts and goat farm. I can tell you that the women had a great time setting up their beds, some sheets even matched with their mosquito nets! By the time we arrived it was sieta. Some took a nap while others played catch and basketball with some children that showed up to the camp. We shared our first meal together in the Dominican (hot dogs) and then were invited to join the teenage worship service at the church about 75 yards from the camp.

The church is a metal building with a concrete floor and beige walls. It is beautiful! Many of us felt dirty and uncomfortable by this point but the most wonderful thing happened. At the conclusion of the Spanish service, with a translator provided for the message, we were blessed with a familiar song, "Breathe" on the piano. Immediately a blend of lyrics in Spanish and in English were sung. It was the most beautiful sound. Many of us, including myself, were brought to tears. It was what I would imagine heaven to sound like. How great is our God!

We are thinking and praying for all of you back home and want you to know how much we love you!

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