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Entries in Dominican Republic (12)


Leaving the Comfort Zone

What would you leave for the sake of the Gospel?

Some people leave family and friends, even countries, to share God’s love in nations across the world. But “leaving” doesn’t have to involve permanent or long-term geographic relocation. Leaving can simply mean getting out of your comfort zone, stepping outside the boundaries of the familiar, to reach out
to others.

That describes the second-year Charis Bible College students who visited the Dominican Republic earlier this year. The team, comprised of twenty students, two interns, and two staff members, left the familiar surroundings of the U.S. to bring the Gospel to a nation more than 2,000 miles away. Ministering on the streets and in the schools, the students didn’t do it in their own power but in the power of the Holy Spirit.

When the team traveled to a high school located high in the mountains outside Santiago, it was slow going. Four weeks of rain had produced terrible road conditions. The road was even washed out in many areas. But their leaving was worth it. Once they got to the school, the team performed skits and shared a short message of salvation. About 175 students received Jesus as their Savior! The Charis students found such freedom in being able to share Jesus so openly—in a public school!

During a second public school outreach, the team ministered to about 500 students and faculty members. Again, they performed skits and shared the Gospel. They also passed out food and candy, which was a hit with
the students.

The weeklong trip also included street ministry and open-air ministry in a park. During one of the open-air meetings, the team invited people to come forward with their prayer needs. Bryan Houser prayed for a lady who had pain in her throat. Because of their language differences, they were only able to communicate through hand signals. Bryan placed his hand on the lady’s throat and prayed. The pain lessened after the first prayer, but it wasn’t completely gone. He prayed again and the pain left!

Another team member, Kathy, prayed for an elderly woman with an eye problem. After praying for her, Kathy learned through the interpreter that the woman’s eye problem was healed. The team also prayed for Pastor Abel, a man their team leader had known for over twenty years. Pastor Abel and his wife pastor a church in a rough area of Santiago and had joined the Charis team during an outreach.

“Personally, the most exciting part of the entire afternoon,” Kathy says, “was the prayer for the pastor and his team. I felt the Spirit in a tangible way over his wife. I felt the anointing flowing over her like rain showering her, over and over. [It was a] powerful time!”

Evangelism wasn’t relegated to only the schools and streets, however. The team also ministered in local churches. During one such meeting, the students witnessed an event they do not usually encounter in the States. At the end of the service, people were invited up for prayer. Bryan had just finished praying for someone and had turned to join a teammate, Carrie, in praying for a woman who had come forward. As soon as Bryan placed his hand on the woman’s head, she fell backward. Carrie immediately knew there was demonic activity, so she continued to pray in the Spirit. When she laid her hands on the woman’s legs, the woman began to scream and cough. In the spirit, Bryan saw black smoke come from the woman’s mouth. He commanded the demons to come out, and the lady was set free!

Leaving for the sake of the Gospel is what second-year Charis missions trips are all about. Partner with us and help take the power of the Word and the Holy Spirit to the nations!

Written by Sylvia F. Wells

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Freedom in the Dominican Republic

Charis Bible College prepares second-year students to go and declare the glory of God to other nations by sharing His wonders among all peoples (Ps. 96:3). These mission trips are not just prayer walks. Those who go—students whose lives have been transformed by the Holy Spirit—carry the “Charis experience” with them, taking the love and power of God and sowing it among the people they come in contact with. On one particular trip, the destination was the Dominican Republic—one of two nations located on the island of Hispaniola in the Greater Antilles archipelago, nestled in the turquoise waters of the Caribbean.

With the help of their hosts, Tim and Trena Johnson, the students visited many different places, and their testimonies awakened the reality of the Gospel for the listeners. Students truly had the opportunity to learn the meaning of Christian outreach. They were not sharing just stories from a book; they were sharing the true love of God flowing from their own lives. They visited a prison in Santo Domingo, and Charis student Sylvia Wells opened her heart and shared her testimony with the inmates:

“A few years before I came to Charis, my twenty-three-year-old son, Kyle, was involved in a hit-and-run accident and was left to die on the side of the road. Being found by a policeman, he was then rushed to the hospital, where he died several hours later. The man who hit Kyle was drunk at the time of the accident. He was arrested just days later and received a light sentence for what he had done. My son was born again, and in spite of the circumstances, I knew that God’s Word promises that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (2 Cor. 5:8). Because of this truth, how could I be sad, knowing that my son was now in the presence of the God I love?”

She continued, “I forgave the man and chose not to harbor bitterness toward him. I was free to celebrate the life of my son without focusing on the loss. Later, I found out that the man was struggling with guilt and depression because of what had happened to my son and our family. I wrote him a letter and extended forgiveness to him. I told him that Jesus died for him so that he could be forgiven and free. The man was very grateful for my letter. I’m sharing with you today how God helped me to forgive the man responsible for my son’s death—because you need to know that God’s forgiveness is available for you too. My son’s race is over, but yours isn’t. God still has a plan for your life. Don’t give up!” With those words, seeds of forgiveness, redemption, and hope were planted in the lives of those inmates.

During the same trip, Dominican children also received ministry. The visit from the Charis team to a mission where children gather for a meal and Bible study was the highlight of the day for many involved. The children were able to see that God loves them through these students taking the time to show that they cared. Ed and Michele Liquete, the team leaders, had the opportunity to minister to a Canadian girl who was struggling with drugs. They also helped others rededicate their lives to the Lord. Like Jesus, the Charis team went about doing good and destroying the works of the devil (Acts 10:38).

If you would like to help take the Gospel of Christ to the nations through the missions trips taken by Charis students, go to our

If Sylvia’s testimony or the work done in the Dominican Republic ministered to you, please comment below.


Not Limited Anymore

Judy and Anna with one of Anna’s neighbors“All my neighbors here in this community know how I used to walk with my arm stiff. I always had it covered. People knew I could not sleep because of the pain. I could not dress myself, and my daughters had to brush my hair for me. As you can see, that is not the case anymore.”

As a team of Charis Bible College students arrived at the little village on the outskirts of Santiago, Dominican Republic, they prepared for yet another opportunity to share and minister the love of God to the expectant hearts of the people who began to surround them. One of the locals, Anna, headed straight for one of the students on the team, not realizing that this student was not only one of the two fluent Spanish speakers on the team but also happened to be a nurse.

“My plan was to pray for the little children, but God had other plans,” remarks second-year student Judy Saiz. “Anna came up to me and presented with a painful right shoulder. She stated that she had had this condition for a while and that it had progressively worsened.” Needless to say, Anna was tired of her condition and sought the only source of hope she had left—her Savior, Jesus Christ.

Anna and Judy lifting their hands high—something Anna couldn’t do beforeWasting no time, Judy began to minister to Anna. “When I asked her what she would like Jesus to do for her,” remarks Judy, “she responded with, ‘I believe that God can heal my shoulder so that I can do the things I have to do every day.’”

After a brief exam, Judy realized that Anna had what is called a frozen shoulder and experienced limited flexion and extension in her arm. “I thought, Lord, this is a frozen shoulder. In my experience, this will require surgery and three months of intensive physical therapy. The Lord said to me, ‘Yes, I know.’

“I told her that we would have to pray in agreement, and I commanded the pain to leave and never come back. I prayed for full range of motion in her shoulder and for the inflammation to leave immediately in Jesus’ name.”

Instantly, Anna received her healing. Jumping up and down, she extended her arm straight upward and began to glorify and praise God for the healing she had received.

Anna sharing her testimony with her people, with translator Conrad and Pastor TimAnna then took the platform and told the people in the little village of Rio Seco, Jacuaga, about the great healing that had just taken place and what Almighty God had done for her. “As you can see, I’m not limited anymore,” Anna proclaimed.

Anna and Judy’s encounter is just one of the many examples of the testimonies that come from the Charis Bible College missions trips. As students continue to take the message of God’s love and grace to the cities and villages of the world, there’s no telling what God will do next!