Prior to the arrival of the team it had been raining for weeks which is not a good sign for a mission that requires lots of sun to be successful. We were worried. We even had thoughts of rescheduling the event. But we decided to move ahead and adapt to whatever sunshine was available. We had 6 full days of sunshine and 6 amazing solar oven cooking demonstrations, thanks be to God.
We hosted another fine group of South Dakotans and one from Michigan, hardworking and dedicated volunteers. We traveled west and south to the Barahona region and visited Cabral, Fundación, Canoa, and Vicente Noble. It was a first time visit to each of these villages and all who attended the workshops were enthusiastic about solar oven cooking. The doors are open wide for follow-up visits planned for next year.
Solar Oven Partners sent two board members, Gene Bethke and David Silbernagel, to make a covenant agreement with the Dominican Evangelical Church. The covenant for solar oven ministry in the Dominican Republic was signed by the bishop, Rev. Miguel Angel Cancú, by the president of social action, Rev. Maria Bock and by Gene and David. Our common mission is now official and we anticipate many years of service together to get solar ovens into the hands of people who need it most, with the love of God as our bond.
We are very grateful to the volunteers for all their work and for sharing themselves with us. Our thanks to Gene and Wanda, David, Dale, Darci and Zach, Paula, and Wade and to the Dominican team members: Rev. Maria, Rev. Erasme, Pedro, and Mario. After 10 days together of hard work, laughter, devotions, worship, breakfast sandwiches, Pedro’s antics including arm wrestling with Gene at the Pizzeria, getting thrashed by ocean waves, David’s magic phone that translates languages, watching a strange assortment of videos on the bus – Pedro’s picks, we came away with the feeling that we have been touched by God, that we have treasures in heaven.