Rich and Sharon Doebler from Cloquet Gospel Tabernacle (Cloquet, Minnesota) recently led several pastoral and leadership training conferences in the Dominican Republic. Ministers and leaders from across a wide spectrum of denominations in the DR benefited from the Doeblers’ 37 years in ministry–Rich teaching from a pastor’s perspective on developing vision and other leadership topics such as dealing with church conflict; Sharon, as director of children’s ministries, on building and strengthening care to children.
Several years ago, Jim and Renee Larson, missionaries from the Cloquet church, began reaching out to churches and pastors throughout the Dominican Republic. They discovered the passion of local ministers to reach their towns and neighborhoods for Christ was often limited by a lack of training or resources. As a result, the Larsons founded Every Day Ministries (www.everydayministries.com) along with their partners, Adrian and Sharon Thomas. Since then they have committed themselves to equipping church leaders, instructing local pastors, and resourcing churches with both teaching opportunities and physical improvements.
“A hurricane thwarted our earlier plans,” Doebler said, “but Jim and Renee are tenacious–and got us to try again.” The effort was well worth it, he explained. “Our church in Minnesota can tap into all sorts of resources: curriculum publishers, leadership training, ministry conferences, and helps provided by various parachurch organizations. But in the DR, those advantages are extremely rare. I thank God for the Larsons and their commitment to stand in the gap, ministering to the ministers.”
Each year a number of short-term mission teams partner with Every Day Ministries to assist in accomplishing some of these goals. Local churches in the Dominican (from a number of evangelical backgrounds) have been blessed with new or improved facilities and evangelistic events.