Church engages youth in annual DR mission

 In Community

It was warm and sunny, but it definitely wasn’t a vacation. 

A group of 22 people from Clearview Community Church travelled to the Sosua region of the Dominican Republic for a one week Mission Trip in February. 

Our group was made up of people from all ages and all experiences in missions trips. For some, this was their fifth time returning, for others it was their first time leaving Ontario. 

Each year Clearview Community Church sends a team to Sosua and partners with full time missionaries Rob and Tina Ianonne who run Willing Servant Ministries, a Mission organization that serves in the Sosua area. For over a decade the church has sent teams every year of people ranging from five to 22 people. 

This year the team participated in a building project for a family in poverty, children’s programs, and serving at the medical clinic run by Willing Servant Ministries. 

The building project was located in a poverty stricken village called La Viga. Many of the houses are no more than tin and cardboard shacks that do not provide safety from the elements or proper sanitation. Many of those houses do not have running water or washroom facilities. 

This year’s team helped continue a work project started the week before that included mixing cement (by hand, no mixer), digging a septic tank out of the clay ground, sifting sand, smooth coating walls and other tasks. This house was being built for a married couple with children in that village. Clearview Community Church has helped build multiple buildings in the past, including houses and a church building. 

At the three children’s programs, the team presented a skit, led songs and played games with over 350 children. At the end of each program, children were given a snack, juice, and a gift bag. Each of the gift bags held toothpastes, toothbrushes, soaps, teddy bears and other items. 

The medical clinic was in need of many supplies so the team brought luggage bags full of medical supplies such as ibuprofen, pedialyte, eye drops, children’s Tylenol and others. Some of the team members were even given an opportunity to serve while the clinic was open. 

We do it because we know that we are able to help those who need it, and as a church, that is what God asks us to do; help those who need it the best we can. Combining the medical supplies and the children program supplies, our team brought 27 luggage bags full of mission aid, approximately 1,300 pounds worth. 

Clearview Community Church fundraises throughout the year for this mission trip. Each summer at the Stayner site there is a large yard sale, each winter there is a fundraising dinner, along with medical supply drives, euchre fundraising nights and other opportunities. The way that I have explained it before is that it is a church wide mission, a church wide commitment, and we send representatives every year to give Willing Servant Ministries some help. 

One of the highlights was to see the work commitment shown by so many young people. Of the 22 individuals on the team, 12 of them were 26 years old or younger. That young group were committed to the training that took six months beforehand, and on arrival were willing servants doing whatever they were asked with integrity and incredible effort. 

Clayton Culham is a pastor at Clearview Community Church, located in Stayner. The church runs a satellite service at Station on the Green in Creemore every Sunday.

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