Dominican Republic: Carol Stephens
Building the Church One by One Among the Needy in a Remote Mountain Village
Carol Stephens is welcomed by the school children after a recent leave.
Carol Stephens has devoted more than twenty years to discipling the people in the Mountains of the Dominican Republic where the ministry center is located. She calls it…EI Shaddai God’s name meaning: Carol Stephens has devoted more than twenty years to discipling the people in the Mountains of the Dominican Republic where the ministry center is located. She calls it…EI Shaddai God’s name meaning: Almighty God, all Sufficient One, God of the Mountains! God is there helping her and their ministry partners to build the church, along with a mandate she received from the Lord …
“To Bless instead of curse, and bring Joy instead of sadness while each day you Live the life I have given you with them.”
Here’s what Carol says about what God is doing there now –
This year 2019, we are celebrating twenty-one years of ministry to the people of Mata de Limón La Vega Provence, and surrounding villages. In the beginning Spring Pascua 1998 a ministry began to the children of all ages that naturally lead to their parents, extended families and surrounding communities. In the fall of 2007 I was introduced to a preschool curriculum developed by Youth With A Mission.* Through this curriculum the LORD inspired me to open a preschool in our community.This became our focus. This curriculum* was first developed in English at the YWAM center in Kailua Kona, Hawaii on the Big Island to serve the families who were coming to the center for missions training.
The curriculum is based on the Creation Story of the Living Bible. Through this the children are receiving sound teaching in values and respect for each other. It also is answering questions: Who am I? Where did I come from? And it is introducing them to; Language Arts, Math, Music, Physical Ed, Science, Geography and History, all through learning about Our God’s Creation which He has given us as a place to live and meet with Him. And,Training Teachers and staff in early childhood development.
Since everyone here speaks Spanish a translation was necessary. At First, translation was done as was needed each day to train the teachers and provide lesson plans for them in learning to prepare for classes. I had help from YWAMers around me who were translating a few pages at a time into Spanish to train our teachers for our community. A staff was trained and we were ready to open our school. That was an exciting moment. We opened with eight students who were ready and October 2010 we opened our first class. We were Blessed and had so much fun learning all about our surroundings God’s Creation. Not long after this I was introduced to Damarys a Dominican living in the states who committed with me to translate this project as a whole. The curriculum translated into Latin American Spanish. We need to finish that process, publish and offer/sell to other Spanish speaking peoples. Today we are almost ready for print. Glory to our Risen LORD!!! We want to spread the word to other communities and Spanish speaking peoples everywhere.
Jesus said, and Mathew 25:35-36 records this for us: “For I was hungry and you gave me food. I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.”
Whatever the Lord brings to our attention, these efforts foster a respect for each other which in turn brings some to faith in Jesus Christ, Crucified dead, buried and Resurrected to life again with an understanding of His never ending Unconditional Love. This is the heart of His message to a people hungry for the truth.
The ministry is going well as I write. The preschool is doing very well. We have two classes now so we are expanding and requests for more classes. We are working with another ministry it’s called “Ministerio Infantil Viva el Amor”. They have a large school serving their community in Pimentel a suburb of Santa Domingo.
This is now our focus Taller de Eli our preschool in Mata de Limon. Reaching the community through the preschool and families connected with it. Hoping to build more classrooms maybe some in other villages. Need to train more teachers.
“The Lord has established His beachhead, and yes it is a military term, at El Shaddai and called me to work with Him there. I said, ‘Yes’ to Him; I want to be there with Him as He brings the light of His glory to the Dominicans who are sitting in darkness enabling the light of the Gospel to reach out into the region and countries around the Caribbean, South and Central America, Mexico and the United states, wherever there are Spanish speakers.
This love is well rewarded when someone says, “I want the joy you have.” This happens more and more among Gods people. One by one, the Christian community grows under the teaching of those who love in Jesus’ name. And even after twenty-one years Carol gets excited about that and pours her life out for the village of Mata de Limón 3,100 feet up in the remote Dominican Republic Mountains.
She says, “I count it all joy to stand beside the Lord in what He is doing in Mata de Limón and the Dominican Republic.”
“A Biblical Foundation for Early Childhood Education.” This curriculum was developed in English within the Early Childhood Education Centre, University of the Nations, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, A Ministry of Youth With A Mission.