Elder Neser’s Island Report

Hola! 

This week was awesome! It rained a lot this week. It is so crazy because we will be riding our bikes to a lesson and it will be sunny and fine then all of a sudden it will start pouring rain and we will be soaking wet by the time we get to the next house. Then it will be sunny again. It is never cold though which is good! 

I had a lot of really good experiences this week. This past week we taught a ton of lessons. It seemed like everyone let us come into their house and teach them. Sometimes when we were in a hurry to get somewhere we would say that we wanted to come back another day and share something, but then the people would say “no, no, no” just come in now and lets talk. It was crazy. I have never taught so many lessons in one week. I guess we have been seeing a lot of hearts being softened. We have recently seen the mission work start to grow rapidly. I think that God is preparing the island for great things. 

Yesterday a new member came to church. The crazy thing is that he is not Rapa Nui and he is not Chilean; he is American! He is a student from BYU Hawaii and he is a returned missionary that served in Mexico. He is here doing a thesis paper about culture. He is going to be here for 3 months. He is going to be a great addition to the branch for these three months. He was super excited to help the branch and he even came on a few visits with us yesterday. It is basically like having another missionary here with us. All of the members call him “Elder”. It is really funny.

We had an interesting experience on Saturday. We were riding our bikes to a lesson and this tourist waved us down. So we went over to talk to him. He was nice and introduced himself. He was from Australia and said that he knows a lot of Mormons and always likes talking to them. So we started talking to him. He asked us how it was being a missionary here on the island, etc. Then he started talking to us about the Book of Mormon and how he has studied it and has found a bunch of errors in it. Then he started talking about how we were wasting our time here. He even went so far as to say that the Bible was false and that God was just something made up. He went on and on. He told us about everything that he has studied and all of the places that he has traveled to try and prove Mormons wrong. It was pretty unbelievable. He knew a lot. My companion and I just shared with him our testimonies and invited him to actually read the Book of Mormon and pray and ask God if it is true. He had an excuse for everything and wouldn’t answer our questions. It was a really interesting experience. He basically has dedicated his whole life to proving our beliefs wrong. My companion asked him several good questions: why have you dedicated so much of your life to studying about our religion? If it is false, what is the point in trying to prove it wrong? He wasn’t really able to answer these questions and blabbed on about something. Then my companion said, “you have felt something about this church, haven’t you? You have felt that it is true? Then he got really defensive and said that he has never felt anything in his life. I think that he has felt that what we teach is true and that God does exist but he is just fighting it. 

Finally, this week a member of the church shared with us some dreams he was having. Richard Tuki told us a couple of dreams that he recently had and asked us if we could interpret them. It was so cool to listen to these dreams and hear his stories about how his dreams have come true. It is a real testimony that the people on this island matter to our Heavenly Father and that he inspires them through dreams. We are doing great here on Easter Island! We are working hard and seeing many miracles! 

Elder Neser

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