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Dominican Republic 2008 – Day 4

DRDay4

We’ve just ended day 4 of our trip.
I don’t have internet access so I don’t believe that I will be able to upload our last video until I get home.
Terry and I got to our hotel room from ICC just a little while ago.
It’s about 2:15 a.m. and Vicki, Arman and Carlos just got back.
Everyone is exhausted but very happy.
With the help of many, and the power of God, a thriving church has a working, state of the art phone system, our Santa Domingo office has a functioning video conferencing system and the community of Consuelo has a new, cutting edge, computer lab. Hundreds, if not thousands of people will gain job skills and education from this lab, People will have opportunities to learn and grow, and the local church who hosts the site will have a chance to be Jesus with skin on. Who know just how many people’s eternities will be transformed through this space.

We had terrible challenges at both locations. The truth is, challenges come everyday…but people who rise to meet these challenges are rare and precious.
Everyone who served on this initiative worked 12 to 15 hours a day. They poured themselves out and excepted nothing less than pure excellence for their God; serving together with great joy and love.

The mutual respect between our Dominican colleagues and our team was amazing. The professionalism and Technical talent in the D.R. is absolutely outstanding. I would be proud to serve along side any of the technologists from the Esperanza, the Consuelo Lab and ICC (Christian Community Church) anytime, anywhere. They truly are exceptional.

Vicki, Arman, Carlos  Pedro, Mark and a host of others really stepped up to the challenge out at the Consuelo lab. They had one significant set back where they had almost completed configuring one of the main components of the lab when the power went out. They had to start the set up process over completely. I’ll never forget the exhaustion in Arman’s voice when he called me with a status report. It was a major setback. However, Arman and the team pressed on and finished the lab. All 30 of the work stations they set out to implement were working when the team left Consuelo. Arman even had the blessing of seeing some people use the lab before he left. Now I pray that this technology will serve this community for a long time to come. If this works, we will have a conduit for education and transformation that is cost effective, manageable and scalable.

People from he community trying out the new lab.

Terry Rugg and I needed to address phone problems at ICC and Video Communication Problems at our Santa Domingo office. The phone problem ended up taking most of our time so I really relied on the leadership of Pedro, Arman, Vicki and Carlos. They all blew me away with their determination and ownership.
It was fun to see Arman and Carlos build a friendship. I really do believe that they will stay connected when Arman goes home.

Back at ICC, I was so thankful to have had the help of Dan Rothstein, Jim Smeenge, Bill Marquardt, Terry Rugg, Brett Rogers and Rafael Hernandez on the phone challenge. Terry and I, along with Brett who connected to us via GoToMeeting  and Rafael who tirelessly helped us coordinate with ICC staff, ended last night with great frustration. After prayer…and sleep…
I sent out a mass call for help to our volunteers. I also left a voicemail message for Jim Smeenge, a fellow I.T. Director who oversees a similar a phone system out at Christ Community Church in St. Charles, IL. Dan Rothstein, a Willow Creek Computer Connection volunteer, replied to my email call for help. Bill Marquardt, another longtime I.S. volunteer also replied to my email call for help. Dan, Jim and Bill all stepped up. Dan actually used his own support account with the phone system provider, Didium, to get us connected to R.J., a Digium engineer. Bill helped get Jim and I connect…and Jim offer his expertise; basically giving up his afternoon to help us. With Terry Rugg riding point, that team brought ICC’s phone system back to life.

I have so much more to say about other close friends but I must get some sleep.
I just want to end this email as promised.
I give God all the Glory. I will not forget his great blessings during this initiative. He really blessed show up on this project.

One thought on “Dominican Republic 2008 – Day 4

  1. Fady Eldeiry
    #

    Glad everything went well! God is good! Have a safe trip back!

    Reply

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