This country is famous for its fertile land, frequent rainfall, its well-educated population and its location. One quarter of Costa Rica’s land is dedicated to national forests, often adjoining picturesque beaches, which has made the country a popular destination for affluent retirees and tourists.
Costa Rica’s political system has steadily developed, maintaining democratic institutions and an orderly, constitutional scheme for government succession. The country has avoided military involvement in political affairs because it has no armed forces.
The population is estimated at around 4.13 million people, with an assortment of origins. The vast majority of Costa Ricans are of European descent, Spain being the main country of origin. There are also Nicaraguans, primarily mestizo origin, descendants of 19th-century Jamaican immigrant workers and native Indians survived European contact; their population numbers about 29,000, which is less than 1% of the population.
The plan to open Costa Rica was envisioned during the Logos II visit in January 1998 and the OM ministry began shortly after August 2000 when Darrel and Kathy Grasman moved to the capital city, San Jose.The Central America field was approved at ILM Brazil in January 2000 and besides Guatemala, Panama, and El Salvador, Costa Rica was the sole country without an OM office and personnel and was chosen to pioneer the ministry and locate the central office for the field.
OM Costa Rica has united with several local mission agencies involved in COMIBAM and currently is ministering with dozens of local churches to recruit, provide training and involve hundreds of people in short-term evangelistic projects both locally and throughout Central America.
The ministry is now incorporated with the government and a local board gives guidance.In May 2008 and after the initial seven years of establishing OM in the country, the ministry will come under the leadership of Costa Rican, Alex Paniagua.
The office is located in the ESEPA Bible seminary in the capital city of San Jose.
The OM Costa Rica team is involved every month ministering in local churches to provide practical training and involve hundreds of people in short-term projects both in Costa Rica and throughout Central America.
Short term programs are provided in Costa Rica such as medical outreaches, ministering with Indigenous people, working in poverty areas of San Jose, evangelism and the objective is to train and recruit local people to get involved in these programs.
The OM team plans an annual outreach with the Indigenous people of Talamanca and also medical outreach to extreme poverty areas in rural areas of Costa Rica. During 2008 and 2009, the OM team will initiate AIDS seminars and projects to involve the local church.
Currently the OM team is involved in recruiting local people for short term programs. A further visit to the indigenous area is set with a major program planned and a medical team is also scheduled for the Indigenous area.
Beside the beauty of Costa Rica, foreigners are well accepted with many good opportunities to serve in community projects. Costa Rica also provides many opportunities to learn Spanish in well known institutions and allows foreigners who fulfil basic requirements to obtain national residency readily.
Thank You for the beautiful country of Costa Rica with its fertile land, beaches and national parks. Thank You for the good educational level of the country, the stable government and peaceful politics. We pray for the work among the Indigenous people of Costa Rica and for projects concerning health and poverty issues, that Your love may be visible to those in need.
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