Sunday, May 20, 2012

house update

Concrete beam progress:


First off, this picture does no justice to the craziness that has been going on here for the last several months.

Yes, today is Presidential election day.  Politics here are crazy, and I don't think I can really explain why.  The government is really corrupt so people are always talking about how all the officials steal money and have several vacation homes while the majority of the general population lives in poverty.  But then, people get so excited about elections and go crazy having political rallies and parades (as pictured).  The funniest thing to me about campaigning here is that all the candidates take current pop songs and change the words to turn them into songs supporting their candidacy.  Then they give out boxes of food to any and everyone who wants to stand in line for several hours, regardless of party affiliation.  And then on election day you see people standing outside of the polling places, discreetly handing out money saying "you know what to do" as the voters walk inside to vote.

So, from the outside looking in, it just seems like a lot of hoopla and fan fare, and at the end we still have a president who robs from the poor in order for him to live in luxury.

So, please pray for the DR today.  SO many people are hoping for change and looking to the president to fix all the problems in this country.  But I know that the only thing that can really make a change here is Jesus.  Pray that the Dominican people would turn to God for their hope and put their trust in Him, not in political promises and handouts.

Problem: Rainy Day and Wet Laundry

Solution:  Indoor Clothes Line!

P.S.  I'm trying to raise money to buy a washer and dryer.  You can read all about it here.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

House Building Update

Progress on the house is coming along!  It is so exciting to see everything take shape.  Here are some pictures of what has been done in the last few weeks.

Here in Cristian laying block in his PT office uniform.  :-)  After he finishes his 8-4 job at the PT site he heads down to the house to work for a few hours.  And yes, he came home with his nice work clothes covered in concrete.  :-)
Cristian supervising as the walls come up.  This was the morning that we left for our 1 year anniversary weekend away.

The most recent picture that I have of the house.  

Next step: pour concrete beam above window level and then add one more layer of block. 

Please Pray...

Last year around this time, we encountered some problems with the District of Education because our SI preschools were not following some of the regulations required by the government.  To make a long story short, the main rule that we were not following was using the national school calendar because due to the nature of Students International's ministry and having teams coming all summer, we have to have class during the summer.  So (again, long story short) we, in a meeting with the district, came to the agreement that if we only had children ages 3-4 at our schools (age 5 is when they are required to start school by the government) then we wouldn't have to be registered and under the jurisdiction of the District.  So, we changed our schools to only 3 and 4 year olds.  Problem solved.

Or so we thought.

A few weeks ago, the head of the district came out of the blue to our school and told us that if we didn't get the kids registered and start complying with the school calendar that she was going to close the schools.  We were so blindsided by her visit since we thought we had fixed everything last year.

We are hoping to have a meeting with the District head next week to try to come to some sort of agreement.  But we don't really know what the outcome of the meeting will be so we are forced to start exploring some other options with the chance that we may have to close the schools.

Please pray for this process as it is really shaking us all up a bit.   Please pray that the District head will find grace in her heart and see that what we are doing is a huge help to the community and that by closing the schools would hurt so many kids.  Pray also that, whatever the outcome of the meeting, we would be sensitive and open to God's leading about how we should proceed for the future.