Dearest Friends and Family
The Poor’s are moving to the Dominican Republic! We are moving to a place with beautiful weather and where baseball reigns supreme– which, if you know us at all, you know that the latter is a big deal. Here is the story about how God guided us to make this decision
After high school Randy went to Multnomah Bible College where he majored in Educational Ministries and more importantly met and married Emilie. After Bible college, Randy knew three specific things: 1) He found a rad wife! 2) He received a solid Biblical education, and 3) There’s no way he was going to be tricked into going on the mission field no matter how many missions conferences he went to. After college, Randy finished a master’s program, began teaching special education, and has been teaching in the public school system for the last four years. Teaching seemed to be perfect, but Randy longed to do more than teach kids how to read, he longed to preach the gospel and make disciples. Through coaching and after school programs, Randy was able to feed this desire but it never quite satisfied the evangelist inside him. Randy knew he wanted to work with students aged 12-18 while unashamedly preaching a grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone Gospel and making disciples, but realized American public school wasn’t a great fit.
Emilie wanted to be a missionary since she was a little girl. She grew up going on several (about 12) mission trips to Mexico and was able to learn Spanish. Her goal was to be a missionary in a Spanish speaking country, a desire which continued through Bible College and into married life; however, it became apparent that Randy’s career path didn’t seem to mesh with hers. Emilie quietly began praying that somehow we would end up in a cross-cultural setting. Over the years, Randy’s gifting of teaching and evangelism had to be juggled delicately in the public school system. Gradually over time a desire to preach Jesus in a cross cultural setting became apparent in Randy’s heart. He asked Emilie how she felt about teaching abroad as a way to “make tents” to support a Christ proclaiming sports outreach. For Emilie it was a long awaited and exciting answer to prayer. We began to look into where we could teach abroad and begin our lives as overseas missionaries.
We firmly believe God works through a person’s desire, life situation, and spiritual gifting. Randy, Emilie, the family, and the Dominican Republic fit together like a sure handed shortstop and and a worn in mitt. We love baseball, Emilie speaks Spanish, Randy works well with student athletes, and the kids are willing to go wherever daddy is so he
can boldly proclaim the Gospel. While we’re not giving up on Randy’s teaching experience, we’re going to the DR to be missionaries, but being a part of a school will allow Randy to learn Spanish and allow us to network in-country.
As we researched international schools, we found and subsequently visited La Vega Christian School. La Vega Christian School is a preschool to 12th grade school located in north central DR. The Northern part of the Dominican Republic is only 2% evangelicals (which makes it an unreached people group). The school will act as a language school as Randy teaches English to Spanish speakers and will also help support us in our real reason for being in the country, proclaiming the gospel. We are also going to start a baseball ministry for the poorest of the poor (which the Dominican has in great numbers). Randy has been involved in a ministry here in Beaverton called Sports Outreach Northwest and we are taking Sports Outreach Northwest to the Caribbean. After the United States the Dominican Republic is the 2nd producing country of Major League Baseball players. The Dominican Republic is a country of radical poverty, baseball is a way “off the island” as locals say. Dominican boys play baseball with whatever they can find–for the most part, this means grabbing a stick off a tree for a bat, shaping garbage for a ball,and folding milk cartons to a use as a mitt all with the hopes of being found and signed by a big league team. Randy will go in with a simple plan–draw kids to him with baseball and free equipment so he can proclaim the Gospel, make disciples, and do it again. Baseball is simply a means to an eternal end.
We are so excited about this opportunity for our family. Our two oldest Autry (7) and Clarabelle (5) will be attending La Vega Christian School and Emilie will be at home with Adelaide (4) and Gibson (2). While at home teaching the younger two, Emilie is going to start a school for Haitian immigrants who can’t go to the state run Dominican school, more to come on this note later.
We are hoping to leave as soon as possible, but there are a few things that need to happen before we go.
First, we need to raise $2500 in monthly support and will need to raise more in the following years to support the ministry.
We are asking you to help in whatever way the Lord impresses upon your heart. Here is a list of how you could help:
- Pray for us that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ
- Commit to giving monthly or a one time gift
- Pray for us that our children will have an easy transition
- Commit to partnering with us by visiting, emailing us, or spreading the word
- Pray for us that many kids and their parents will come to a saving faith in Jesus through our ministry
We are stepping forth in faith and trusting the Lord to provide what we need so we can go and tell everyone we meet about Jesus. Simply put, as soon as we raise the money, WE’RE GOING! However, school starts the end of August and we would love to be there by then. We would love to sit down and talk with you about you can partner with us in our ministry, and are so excited to serve the Lord in this new way.
HOW TO GIVE
The Southeast Church
PO BOX 86649
Portland, OR, 97286