Summer 2024

Indiana Wesleyan women's basketball team serves the Dominican Republic

The Indiana Wesleyan Wildcats were far from Indiana during the week of July 17-24, but they were close to the hearts of the communities they served.

Traveling to the Dominican Republic with 14 players, two coaches and three other staff members from the school’s women’s basketball team, per IWU, the NAIA Division-II ballers partnered with GO Ministries to lend a hand overseas. And their work, spanning from facility construction to youth basketball camps, helped them better love not only those in the Dominican Republic, but each other.

(Photo Courtesy: Indiana Wesleyan)

“We came down here with one goal, and that’s to get out of our comfort zone and move on an upward trajectory toward Christ,” head coach Ethan Whaley said, via GO Ministries. “We hit the ground running.”

Between digging and setting foundations for towered structures and sweating amid kids on the court, Whaley said the week-long adventure was no simple task.

“But the refreshing part was there were 15 to 20 people all serving, all working their butts off for each other,” he added. “It’s really hard to be selfish when you see your teammates have been working alongside you in the morning, digging those holes and dumping those wheelbarrows.”

As much as the trip was centered on serving the Dominican Republic, it was also about serving each other. Even if the children there were oftentimes the center of the team’s attention.

“There’s no greater feeling than to love on some kids that may or may not have that coming at home,” Whaley said.

Everything, of course, was centered on Christ — the model for the kind of service the Wildcats poured on communities away from home. With the Holy Spirit “moving in amazing ways,” per Whaley, the team encountered an attitude stemming from Jesus during its time together abroad.

“This is where we grow the most in these times of discomfort,” sophomore Anne Secrest told IWU, “and what better way than to grow with your team, your family, your sisters in Christ, the ones who you will risk everything on the court for?”

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