Serving in: Nagua, Dominican Republic
With: Every Day Ministries Canada (EDMC)
The DeWeerd family works in the Dominican Republic and in the North of Haiti, to equip and empower the national church to reach their nation and the nations of the world with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They do this through spiritual leadership development (Formal: Caribbean Evangelical Theological Seminary, yearly pastors and leaders conferences; Informal: leadership training seminars, workshops), community development (child sponsorship, community transformation projects, church construction, community blessing days) and sustainable land development (passion fruit farm and pastors training and missions center. Short Term Teams from Canada work side by side with us as we work with the local churches in evangelism and community outreach. Both Ryan and Heather are active in multiple areas of the ministry and work on a team with the ministry founders, Adrian and Sharon Thomas.
The population of the Dominican Republic in 2007 was estimated by the United Nations at 9,760,000, which placed it number 82 in population among the 193 nations of the world. The country is a tropical, maritime nation. Wet season is from May to November, with periodic hurricanes between June and November. Most rain falls in the northern and eastern regions.
The Dominican Republic is 95.2% Christian, including 88.6% Roman Catholic and 4.2% Protestant. Recent but small scale immigration, as well as proselytizing, has brought other religions.
Baseball is by far the most popular sport in the Dominican Republic today. After the United States, the Dominican Republic has the second-highest number of baseball players in Major League Baseball (MLB).
The culture of the Dominican Republic, like its Caribbean neighbours, is a blend of the cultures of the European colonists, African slaves, and Taíno natives.