For Haggai leader Rev. Daniel Oscar, disasters stay at the forefront of his mind. The Dominican Republic is located on the beautiful island of Hispaniola, shared with Haiti, their neighbors to the west. Though surrounded by natural beauty, the island is extremely vulnerable to earthquakes and hurricanes. As a pastor, Daniel has learned how to spiritually prepare for times of catastrophe, but the COVID-19 pandemic tested that preparedness:
“I was aware of the vulnerability of my region to natural phenomena such as hurricanes and earthquakes. I was spiritually prepared to share the Gospel of Christ in these situations. But I had no ideas in how to respond in a time of the pandemic.”
Everything Daniel knew about serving in response to natural disasters was tested by the unique safety requirements of COVID-era ministry.
“I had the dilemma of needing to persist in the presentation of the Gospel without being reckless, disrespectful of the rules, and putting the physical lives of the people over whom I have influence at risk.”
Daniel and a local pastor baptize a new believer during the Global Outreach Day in Azua, DR.
But with the encouragement of other Haggai leaders, Daniel looked for ways to innovatively serve those around him in a period of uncertainty. And his greatest ministry opportunity came in the form of a government partnership.
Daniel has a fervent passion to see believers in Haiti and the Dominican Republic grow in mature faith, a passion that was spurred through his participation in the Haggai Leader Experience (HLE) in 2002.
“The HLE allowed me to use my influence to equip and mobilize believers to share the Gospel, from a denominational educational leader I was before, now I’m a national non-denominational leader working in unity with leaders of many different denominations.”
To that end, Daniel has worked with multi-national ministries like Every Home for Christ and Enfocado en la Gran Comision (Focused on the Great Commission), sharing the Gospel and equipping other ministry leaders to do the same. He worked for 21 years in local church ministry, in addition to strategically serving with Global Outreach Day, an international movement dedicated to uniting believers in a concerted effort to share the Good News. He has even published a book, Seven Stars Church: from a Trinitarian Perspective, outlining principles for high performance within local churches.
“My passion is to equip believers for the work of ministry. I don’t see myself as an evangelist, but as an educator who teaches believers to use their spiritual gifts to advance the kingdom of God.“
Daniel pictured with the staff of Every Home for Christ Intl (EHC).
As he reflects on the experiences of the last year, Daniel has a new focus on equipping the Church to end Gospel poverty.
“After the pandemic, we will enter into a world in search of answers, meaning, and solutions. The biggest challenge of the church is not going to be on how to celebrate worship services and preserve finances. The greatest challenge will be ministering to a demanding world. The task now is to prepare, equip and mobilize the greatest possible number of believers in the great harvest of people with problems that are ahead.”