Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Picture A Family of Nef

Chillon Zone
Familia Campos Burgos - they Rock!
Recently learned that this ward came into existence because of one family - the Familia Campos Burgos (dad, mom, 1 daughter, 2 sons). Basically, they have invited everyone in their neighborhood over for Family Home Evening with the missionaries. Half the ward was introduced to the gospel through this family.  Pretty great.  The mom is kind enough to do our laundry every week.

Farewell Manuel
My buddy Manuel had his missionary farewell on Sunday (going to Guatemala). His testimony is so strong - he's going to be an awesome missionary. Manuel has become a bro to me. He likes calling me "Freakin' Nef" which is weird because that was one of my middle school nicknames.
As part of the desbedida (farewell), our choir of 10 sang Brillan Rayos de Clamensia (Brightly Beams Our Father's Mercy). I was the only base, but it was fine.

Speaking of hymns, I learned a tragic backstory of a hymn only published in the Spanish hymnal. Placentero Nos es Trabajar was written by a missionary who was kidnapped in Mexico. Before he died in captivity, he wrote a poem, and this is what they put to music and added in the Spanish Hymnario. Sad.

I Don't Like Buses
The bus ride back from Chillan last week was the worst. Bus drivers are usually pretty good about not over-packing their bus, but I'm supposing our driver wanted more money because he sardine jam-packed our ride and I was left standing hunched in a "C" position for the entire hour trip. My back cramped up in so much pain, I can't even begin to tell you. I don't like buses.

Add to that my allergies. Funny, I had no allergies up in the Andes. But here in the valley with all the smoke, the congestion fogs my head. Pains, discomforts, frustrations. I've had to practice patience, focusing on small blessings, even listening to inspiring music. It helps.

Kronk in Disney's Emperor's New Groove
"You Owe Me a New Acorn"
Every Thursday we teach an English class to anyone who wants to learn. It's a good way to provide service to the community.

This last week I taught them some lines from the ending of the movie Emperor's New Groove. I had them repeat what I said.
     "I gave you an acorn."
     "Did you eat my acorn?"
     "You owe me a new acorn."
I was so proud.
I learned that "bellota" is acorn.

Who Turned Out the Lights?
Friday we came home to find that our electricity was off. Glad we have flash lights, but sunrise is not until 8:30am and we wake up at 7am. Our clothes came back from being washed and I'm glad that I have a high collar sweater (because wrinkle resistant is a lie and no electricity meant no iron).

Our lights came on the next day around noon. Apparently the fuse box is outside 30 meters away. Our darkness was a reminder of the Sister missionary's electrical predicament.

Flash Back 2 Weeks Ago
Two weeks ago the hermanas were having multiple things wrong with their apartment, one of which was the electricity going kaput.  For three days they searched for the problem, but then the lights came back on - no explanation.

During the fiasco, we asked if their house had been blessed (it had not). So we put that on our to-do list, but as circumstances go - we never got around to it...until our blatant reminder on Friday.

We blessed their house.

"Picture a Family of Nef"
My week was good. Lessons are going great. People are progressing, but skyping my family on Sunday was the hilight for sure.

I loved Loved LOOOOVED talking with and seeing you all SO MUCH. (That last LOOOOVED was a high yodel). Following our goodbyes, it took me a minute to compose myself to thank the member whose house we were at. But I managed.
Skyping family in California. My sister Lauren in France, me in Chile.
After the call, Elder Cowley said, "Your family is awesome!  They are all so much like you, especially your mom!"  Yeah, we are a lively bunch! (editor's note: Wow, honorable mention from a companion. That's pretty legit. Thanks Elder Cowley!)

Apparently, I have the reputation of being the tallest, most hungry, highest animo elder in our zone. When Elder Cowley was on the phone with the Hermanas, they asked how it went meeting my family and he told them, "Picture a family of Nef."


Bendiciones a Todos,
Elder Connor Nef

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