If you are a part of Mercy Hill, you know this past June we got to worship, play games, and eat lots of snacks with over 600 superheroes through our Kids Week. Every year at Kids Week, we have a competition between boys and girls to see who can raise the most money to help put on a Kids Week in the Dominican Republic. I was absolutely blown away by the generosity in all their little hearts (and their desire for me to get slimed as a result)! Through the kids of Mercy Hill, we were able to raise 1,300 dollars for the school in Herrera, Santo Domingo!!! <<mind blown!!!>>
Because of this, my team and I were able to host the most awesome Kids Week for the kids at the Tia Tatiana school in the squatter slums of Herrera, Santo Domingo. Day 1 we saw around forty-five kids come to the school to make superhero capes and learn about David and Goliath. I’m not going to lie. I was a little bummed that we didn’t have tons and tons more kids there with us. Little did I know what God had in store and how he was going to use us the rest of the week! By the last day of KidsWeek, we got to teach over 140 kids about how God has called us to be in a relationship with him and how he has sent us out to tell others about Jesus—even in our own neighborhoods!
Even in my doubting, the Lord continued to prove his faithfulness to us through these eager kids!! What a joy it was to be able to spend time with them and see their kindness and friendliness towards us—even when our Spanish was less than sub-par. They didn’t seem to care that we couldn’t communicate well with them, they just wanted to be loved and love us as well!
These Are a Few of My Favorite Things
One of my favorite parts of Kids Week was seeing the excitement from the kids when we told them we were going to make superhero capes and masks. I think we may have gone through about two-thousand stickers, helping them to decorate their very own! It was even more heartwarming to see all the kids leaving the school “flying” down the streets of Herrera with their capes and masks on, ready to share their experience with their friends and family!
My absolute favorite part of our time there was seeing how God used this week to not only move in the hearts of the kids but to move in the hearts of our team! We partnered with an organization called Vision Trust to host Kids Week. Vision Trust’s main mission is “to develop orphaned and vulnerable children into mature Christians equipped to live in their own culture.” They do this by enabling local heroes to meet the physical, educational, emotional, and spiritual needs of these children. One of the local heroes we got to meet was a woman named MariLuz. MariLuz is the Vision Trust Dominicana director and she has such a passion to see children grow up to love Jesus and to care for all their needs!
One day, MariLuz, along with Nelson (who is now the Latin American Director of Vision Trust), talked to our team about child sponsorships. God had been so clearly moving in all of our hearts through the time spent with the children and the time spent worshipping with the community through church services and prayer. We got to see first-hand how God had been working in their lives and how generous they were with their homes, their time, and their money. God was using all of this to open up hearts of generosity within our team. I got to see three children from the Herrera school be sponsored that night!!! What a joy it was to see that and to see the joy my team had in being able to bless these children with what God has so generously blessed them with!
It is my prayer that as we continue to partner with such an incredible organization that we would hear more stories like this of people being generous by being sent out on a short-term mission or by using their resources and helping Vision Trust to provide care for all the superheroes in Herrera. What a privilege it was to be used by God and to be superheroes for a week in the Dominican Republic!!
-Abbey Voss (Kids Associate Director – Clifton)