Spring Meadows Church in Sanford, Fla., held a family mission trip to San Pedro de Marcoris in the Dominican Republic from July 16-23, 2017. Under the direction of Luis and Christine Batista, 20 adults and 14 children joined together to build a new school.
Christina Batista shares her story.
A year before, my husband and I were asked to plan a family mission trip. We began to pray for a couple of months about where to go. Eventually, we received an e-mail saying there was a school in San Pedro, Dominican Republic, in need of help. The government was going to shut the current school down, because it was in such disrepair. Later, we learned people prayed for 12 years to have someone come to help them.
God began blessing this trip from the very beginning by enabling us to secure lodging. When I explained to the manager of a beach resort why we were coming, he let us stay at his resort for as little as $8 per person per night. What a miracle!
In addition to building a five-room school, which enabled 60 more students to attend, we were involved in outreach ministries:
- Vacation Bible School (VBS) was held each day. In order to limit the number to 200, children were given a band to wear. The church still seemed overly packed. After a night or two, we realized bands were passed through the gate so friends could also attend VBS.
- An eye clinic opened each morning with more than 50 people waiting for exams. We read more than 400 prescriptions for adults and children, and 400 pairs of glasses were given out. In fact, they ran out of glasses and had to go into town to buy more.
As a first-time trip leader, I was nervous to bring a large group to a different country, but I was also nervous because I wanted them to have a life-changing experience. Team members worked hard to make the trip a success, including the 14 children who were phenomenal. We were humbled at the joy we felt building the school and reaching out to the community. This experience will live in our hearts forever.
The next family mission trip is scheduled for 2020. Spring Meadows Church has conducted more than 50 mission trips. We are blessed to have traditional, high school, young adult, and family mission trips available for our church members.
Florida | November 2017