Monte Adentro, D.R.
Ephesians 12 & Psalm 103
- That God will help us with the construction of the new church
- For a sports complex
- That Jesus brings us his strength
For ten years Simon enjoyed a successful career as a professional basketball player in the Dominican Republic. His actions mirrored that of many of his fellow athletes—he drank too much, was a womanizer, and acted aggressively toward others, yet he didn’t feel the need for God. As the youngest of nine children, he came from a humble Catholic family and, fulfilling his obligation, he attended church from time to time. Yet, Catholicism didn’t affect his life.
Then, at age 30, a friend (who is also a G.O. staff member) invited him to the evangelical Central Church in Hoya del Caimito. On that Sunday, the pastor spoke on Phil. 4:13: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” For the first time God’s word meant something to Simon and he was hungry for more. Soon, he gave his life to Christ.
Simon volunteered with G.O.’s sports ministry by helping run clinics and leagues, and coaching basketball. Later he was given a part-time paid position, but his passion for physical fitness coupled with his love for Christ sparked the idea for an additional ministry. Simon became a certified weight trainer, bought some gym equipment, and opened a neighborhood gym in the area where he grew up—Monte Adentro. This community in Santiago is typical in many ways in that a great number of males, especially, spend their day playing dominoes and drinking. He wanted to offer them something more.
Today Simon’s gym is used as a vehicle to get to know others and share the Gospel. His clientele includes a broad range of ages, from 13-year-olds to senior citizens. Christian music is played while people work out and Bible verses are displayed on the walls. When G.O.’s sports complex is built, Simon will entrust others to lead the ministry at his gym and transition to the complex to reach still more people.
Simon recently married the love of his life, Beatriz.