As I reflect on our ministry during our 25th Anniversary, one thing remains clear: God continues to use our ministry to change lives. We just finished another spring break, our busiest season of the year. Since our inception, Casas has built homes for 1,654 families during spring break alone. So many lives have been impacted during this season!

I have had the pleasure of serving as the Dominican Republic Field Director for the last 4.5 years. In the Dominican, we are averaging 1.9 new believers per home built. That’s an amazing number! Building homes for families continues to be an effective tool for God to change the lives of families and communities. But that’s not all, that’s only part of it.

God transforms the lives of the individuals who come on our builds, too. It happened to me. Not in a million years would I have ever expected that I would be serving as a full-time missionary. God planted the seed and nurtured its growth through trips and internships with Casas. I’ve been serving with the ministry now since 2006.

Reflecting on my transformation gives me an incredible amount of joy, but the great thing is, I get to experience that same transformation being carried out in the participants of the trips I lead, too. Last month was an incredible example of this. Five young people, most in their 20’s, were transformed by a powerful God who called them to give their lives completely to Him during a trip to Juárez, México. For many of our volunteers, a trip to serve with Casas awakens their hearts and minds to what it means to be a Christian.

After we completed our build and crossed the border back into the US, we had a final team devotion to talk about all God had done. Two ladies on the team came forward and expressed their desire to be baptized. Since the hotel pool was closed, I called a fellow Casas missionary to see if we could use his pool. 20 minutes later I was shooting a Facebook live video of not 2, not 3, not 4, but 5 individuals answering God’s call to follow Him.

This is what it’s all about. Here at Casas, we will continue to minister not just to families and communities, but also to the groups that come to serve alongside of us. Pray with us as we thank God for these decisions and baptisms, but also pray that God will continue to stir affections for Him in the hearts of our trip participants.

– Justin Kirklin
Director of Advancement