Elder Neser juggles Spanish, Portuguese, Rapanui and English!


Well, I am learning more and more Rapanui every week. This past week we went to contact an investigator in his house and he greeted me in Rapa Nui so I greeted him in Rapanui. Then he asked me what we were doing here in Rapa Nui and I understood and responded back!!!! It was so awesome! One of the members bought us a “Rapa Nui to Spanish Dictionary” and is teaching us how to pray in the language. It is awesome!

This week was a very interesting week. Yesterday in Church I gave a talk about being honest. As a missionary, I have really come to appreciate people who are honest. There are so many people who tell us that they will be in their house at a certain time or say that they will come to church and then they end up not showing up. It is really interesting to see the difference between the honest and the dishonest. The honest seekers of the truth always do what they say they are going to do and do the small things that show they are sincerely interested in learning. There are a lot of scriptures that talk about the honest in heart and how they will be accepted in the last day. They will be accepted because they did what they were supposed to do and didn’t lie.  There is a scripture in Ecclesiastes in the OId Testament that says “It is better not to vow, than to vow and not pay.” Honesty is so important. 

But also yesterday in church, two tourists that are members of the church attended our meetings. They were friends and came here for a vacation. One of them was from Brazil and the other was from Riverside, California! The one from Riverside didn’t speak any Spanish and the one from Brazil only spoke Portuguese and broken English.  They were so excited to find people who spoke English. They loved attending church here! The tourist from Brazil gave the closing prayer in Sacrament meeting in Portuguese. It was a crazy day with languages in church because Richard gave the opening prayer in Rapanui. Then President Terry conducted the sacrament in English and broken Spanish then the rest of the meeting was in Spanish and at the end the Brazilian ended the meeting in Portuguese. The cool thing is that I could understand English and Spanish perfectly and Portuguese is basically Spanish with a really weird accent so I understood most of that and I am beginning to understand Rapanui. My mind is going to explode from exposure to so many languages! We also had a lot of inactive members come to church and a number of investigators. It was so awesome. The problem is that every week we have different people that come. If everyone who comes to church would come every week then the church would be filled to the brim! We are praying for that every Sunday! We are teaching a lot of lessons and seeing the work here explode. We have a few baptisms coming up so we are excited. My Mission President said that I will probably be staying here until August so I am pretty excited!!!!!!!!!!! That’s all for this week! 

Elder Neser

We recorded a song for Easter Island radio!

Lorana Korua!

This week was another awesome week!!! I got a new companion. Elder Gibby finished his mission and is headed home so this last week Elder Nicoll arrived. He is also going to be ending his mission soon. He is from Mesa, Arizona and is really tall. He is super funny and going to be an awesome companion. So there was a going away party for Elder Gibby this week at church which was super fun. A lot of members and investigators came and it turned out to be really successful. 

Also, this week we got together with this famous musician here named Hamuana. He graduated from BYU-Hawaii but is not a member. He is a famous musician here and in some of the islands. So my former companion, Elder Gibby, was a really good singer and always wanted to sing some songs and put them on the radio here. We never were able to do it until this past week. We got together with Hamuana and he played guitar and recorded him and my companion singing together. We also finally got “I am a Child of God” translated completely in Rapa Nui so they recorded that. It came out really well! So we took it to the radio station and they should start playing it. It was cool because Hamuana recorded the song Rapa Nui style but still kept it spiritual and he loved it. He said he thinks that a lot of people are going to like it. 

It has been raining a lot lately here. We can’t really do much but just wear our jackets. We get pretty drenched all of the time. It is fun though. We had one really cool experience this week. We went to visit this family that we started teaching a couple of days ago. We have been teaching the mom and her son recently because the dad didn’t want to talk with us and also there are some big problems in their marriage. But when we went, we invited the dad to join with us and he accepted. So we planned to talk about the restoration again to review it but then the dad started asking us a lot of questions and changed the subject to repentance. This is funny because we had originally intended to teach about repentance. This man has been unfaithful in their marriage and is destroying their family. It was a very spiritual lesson and it felt like the spirit was just struggling to touch this man’s heart but couldn’t. It was interesting. It was like a battle. Not a scripture bashing battle but a battle on a spiritual level. When it was kind of intense, we asked the wife if she had anything to say. She kind of hesitated. She never says anything when her husband is around. But then she started to talk and started to bear her testimony. She said that she knew the church was true because it teaches men to be trustworthy and to live without addictions like alcohol and smoking. She said that the world and especially the island is filled with so much evil and so many people that are bad examples. She then said that her only purpose now is to secure the well being of her children. She said that she doesn’t want her son to give into these things. Then she didn’t hold back and said that her son had unfortunately been influenced by the bad example of her husband. And she went on and ended by saying that all she wants is for her kids to be safe and grow up to become good people, not like their father. Ouch! It was intense. The husband didn’t say anything. It made me think about the Jacob 2:35 in the Book of Mormon that talks about the men that broke the law of chastity and committed adultery. It says that many of their wives “hearts died, pierced with deep wounds.” The “Law of Chastity” is a true principle instituted by God to protect his children and their families. I know that this principle is true. 

So that was a little about my week. My companion and I also hiked to some more Moai today and saw some caves that have ancient Rapa Nui drawings on the ceilings. It was so cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That’s it! 

Elder Neser