Things are going great here on Easter Island! I had a great week this week. The first highlight is that on Tuesday I called my Mission President and asked him if I could stay longer on the island (because I was supposed to go back to Santiago next week). I gave him a bunch of reasons. He said he would think about it. Then a few days later he called me and said he thought about it a lot and thinks it is a really good idea that I stay here! I was so excited! So I will be staying here on the island until at least September and most likely until October. I am so excited to be able to stay here longer!
My companion and I have been finding a lot more people and we have been teaching a lot. Yesterday in church we experienced some miracles. A lady came to church that we have been working with for a long time. She is Rapa Nui and her religious background is a mix of Catholicism and Rapa Nui religion. There is a lot of opposition from her family about talking with us and learning about the Mormon Church. She is about 70 years old and she has come to the point where she says that she needs to make her own decisions and it doesn’t matter what her family says. She is so awesome. So she came to church yesterday for the first time which was amazing! She really liked it. From my time here on the island, I have really come to realize that most of the Rapa Nui here are people without a strong Christian background. They believe in a mix of their old Rapa Nui religion and Catholicism. But they don’t really understand the Catholic Church and its teachings. They just attend Catholic Mass because of tradition. And these traditions are very strong on the island. So it is interesting teaching because we have to take things really slowly and teach the basics. It is a big change from Chile. I like it though.
We also have this other investigator in the same situation and he has been coming to church too. What has happened is that our investigators go to the first part of the Catholic Mass at 9:00 am. and then they leave to get to our church and 10:00 am. and then they stay at our church. It is funny because yesterday there was a group of three people that did that.
Another highlight from this week is that last night we gave a lesson to one of our investigators named Alberto. He is Rapa Nui. He loves fish and fishing. So yesterday he went with his friend to go snorkel harpoon fishing. They caught some fish and eel! So they brought it back and cooked it up. They didn’t eat it all so Alberto gave the rest to us. We got to eat fish and eel soup, too! Eel was actually pretty good. It was just weird seeing this big long snake thing floating in the soup and not knowing if it was going to jump out and bite you or not. He also gave us some extra fish that we are going to cook today for lunch. I hit my 11 months in the mission mark today! How crazy is that! Time flies so fast. Those are some of the highlights from my week! I am doing great and the work is going great!