by Rachel Sawyer
One of our amazing Dominican staff, Miguel Arias Hernandez, a.k.a. Aldo, is a professional singer, and he wrote a song about Makarios. Our choir of staff have a great deal of fun performing this song for our incoming mission teams.
The Makarios Song by Miguel Arias
Dios Tu me has vendecido para ayudar a los demas / God, you have blessed me to be a great help to others
Jesus gracias por tu fidelidad quiero proclamarlo hoy / Jesus thank you for your faithfulness I want to proclaim it today
Y es que sabemos amar / This is how we know how to love
es que saberlo educar / This is how we know how to teach
con el amor de Jesus en nuetros corazones / With the love of Jesus in our hearts
Le damos gozo y alegria y educamos a los ninos to'lo dia / We give you joy and happiness and we teach the kids everyday
lo Makarios, lo Makarios / The Makarios, The Makarios
Mi senor me ario la puerta me dio el perdon y con su bondad se gano mi corazon su amor y sacrificio me hizo
libre y le dire al mundo entero que me Cristo vive . . HEY! / My Lord opened the door. He forgave me and with kindness He won my heart. His love and sacrifice set me free and I will tell the whole world that Christ lives. Hey!
Aldo is playing the box drum and his beautiful wife, Bella, is playing the guitar, and some of our amazing National staff: Yomo, Gloria, Marnelia, Genesis, Narolin, Katherine, Leandro, Junior, Belizeuer and Tommy are the joyous singers. Have I mentioned we're a singing bunch????.
If the Lord is putting a song in your heart to partner with our staff in what they are doing here on the ground in the D.R., please click here for more information on how to sponsor a teacher.
by Rachel Sawyer
Living in another culture is a tricky life in many ways. The fish bowl effect is in full force most of the time - not because we are spectacular, but because despite our best efforts most of us walk around with a strange unusualness, despite our best efforts to acclimate to our host culture and establish a "normalcy" within it. And living set apart - IN not OF the world - remains a challenge for all staff here, whether we are living in our passport country, like our Makarios National Staff, or outside of it, like the Makarios American missionaries.
In a real sense, all the staff at Makarios are missionaries, whether in or out of home country, wether raising funds or receiving a salary. Both groups have sacrificed, feel called to share the gospel, live to increase the kingdom and change the impoverished landscape by bringing the riches of a personal walk with Jesus front and center. Some days we do well at this, and some days we fail miserably - but every day our hearts beat with the sense that this world is not our home, with the urgency to share the goodnews with all these little faces and their families whom we adore that we've been entrusted with to walk alongside at Makarios.
Our amazing Art Teacher, Kelly Case, has a very significant tattoo on her calf, created from her mother's handwriting, after her mother unexpectedly left the earth for heaven back in April 2010. Permanently inked on her phyiscal body this reminder made real by her mother's death, has actually given Kelly multiple opportunities to speak to Makarios students and other locals about a heavenly home that awaits those who call Jesus their Savior.
Let Kelly's account of a recent special moment inked in time resonate in your spirit:
"I have one particularly curious student in my fifth grade art class and his curiosity developed over time. It started with, "Profe, what does your leg say?" and last Thursday developed into, "Were you sad when your mom died? How did she die?" Last Thursday that curious student played a very important role in a life changing, come to Jesus moment for his fellow classmate, Luigi. That student's question led to an honest response and a Spirit led opportunity to share the hope of the Gospel in a very personal way. The next thing I knew, Luigi was sobbing and we were praying in the supply closet. I am so thankful to have been able to witness such a powerful moment, and give all glory and praise to God. You never know when or how He will use a piece of your own testimony to share the hope of Jesus with another person."
At the request of inquisitive minds and hearts, Kelly met childlike questions carrying the weight of eternity with Christ like confidence in being able to share the reason for the hope that she has - which is the shared goal for all of the Makarios staff; that our lives, actions and conversations would ultimately lead our students to find that same hope in Christ Jesus.
Last week, through tears and hashing out of truth, Kelly was able to lead Luigi to his Savior, and now this world is not his home either! Hallelujah!
"14 For this world is not our home; we are looking forward to our city in heaven, which is yet to come.15 With Jesus' help, let us continually offer our sacrifice of praise to God by proclaiming the glory of his name. 16 Don't forget to do good and to share what you have with those in need, for such sacrifices are very pleasing to God." ~ Hebrews 13: 14 - 16
By Rachel Sawyer
"Shout joyfully to the world, all the earth; Break forth and sing for joy and sing praises." Psalm 98:4
The blogs this month are dedicated to celebrating the uniqueness and awesomeness of the Makarios staff that the Lord has assembled, and there is nothing more fitting to showcase one of these special qualities than pointing to the singing and praising to the Lord that comes out of the mouths, hearts, lives of our staff - and often through music.
We have some talented singers on our staff and also those who praise God with wild abandon - it's a beautiful thing! During the summer time, our mission groups had the opportunity to experience our choir of national staff praise the Lord through singing.
Some of our visiting soon- to- be -staff were given a warm "How are you?" this way . . .
There is a sincerity, a playfullness and a genuine love for the Lord among this staff. As brothers and sisters in Christ, we've all been rescued - and of course we're going to sing about it!
Another amazing thing about the staff is that most can praise the Lord in two languages, if not three or four!
Like the Makarios staff, we pray that you have a song in your heart for the Lord and that you are boldly sharing it with uninhibited gladness!
By Rachel Sawyer
If I do say so myself, there are MANY endearing qualities about the Makarios Staff as a whole and as individuals. This is a VERY SPECIAL group of people that the Lord has assembled, Dominicans, Haitians and Americans united by the love of Christ that makes us brothers and sisters and bondservants.
One of the things that I LOVE about this staff is how arrivals and departures of those coming to serve and headed home after serving are celebrated together - with posters and signs and music and prayers and sometimes tears. It is overwhelming, really, to be received with such joy and love by people that one doesn't really know . . . yet. Or, to be sent off with prayers for a new journey.
Doing life together on the field in community sometimes gets, well, messy and complicated. Sometimes we misunderstand, miscommunicate, and make mistakes, offering opportunities along the way to offer and receive grace from one another, as well as come alongside one another in ways that we likely did not forsee.
So, the everything in between part is filled with joys, sorrows, hardships, laughter, struggles, heartbrakes, prayers - only slightly more heightened because being on the field is like being under a magnifying glass in the blazing sun - everything is bigger and more intense! But really, we celebrate life together regularly as we walk out our callings.
When there are "hellos" to be given, the staff are there. When there are "goodbyes" to eek out, the staff are there. When someone is sick, has a baby, needs prayers, a break, a helping hand . . . you guessed it, the staff are there! It is truly a remarkable and special trait about the general culture of Makarios staff. If you've been blessed by Makarios staff, leave a comment or take a moment and send them some encouragement!