Actually, it is not for 1000 days. It is just that 3 years times 365 days plus June 27 through June 30, 2008 equals 1098 days, and that is way too cumbersome to convert into a blog headline. Futhermore, our release date will not be determined until May or June of 2011. Therefore, 1000 Days sounded just about right, more or less. Having noted all that, we are humbled and thrilled (Pres. Uchtdorf would refer to the feeling as "joyfully overwhelmed") about having this marvelous opportunity to serve in La Mision Mexico Veracruz.

Con amor,
Pdte. y Hna. Pete and JoElla Hansen

Monday, June 9, 2008

MTC Tutors

Mom and I loved Hermana Cynthia Penaflor. The "n" has a tilda over it so her name is pronounced "pen-ya-flor" which translates "rock flower." She is a native of Peru who graduated from Provo High a few years ago. As we talked we were delighted to discover that she served her mission in Chicago South and that Mom's brother, Al Haines was her mission president. So, we grabbed the cell phone and called Pres. Haines on the spot. It was exciting for us to see the love in her eyes for her mission president. Because of some struggles she was having, it was my distinct honor to give her a priesthood blessing.
All of our tutors were our favorites including Fernando Lagunes and Benjamin Vera. Fernando is a native of Veracruz. His father has been a bishop, stake president, and mission president in Merida, Mexico. He is a CES coordinator in Xalapa, the capital of the state of Veracruz.

His grandfather was the first president of the Veracruz Temple and is currently a stake patriarch. The grandfather joined the Church in 1968. One morning he was driving his bread truck to make deliveries to various markets. He saw two young men walking along the street. He gave them a ride and asked them who they were. They said that they were teachers for a church and were on the way to visit a family. He asked when they would come to his house and teach him. They agreed to come the next Saturday morning. The family was all in bed when they arrived. Fernando's grandfather was so excited by what he was hearing that he got them all out of bed to listen. All were baptized. Fernand0 served his mission in Mexico City. He has invited us to visit the family panaderia or breadstore. We will be there for sure.

Benjamin was one of my first two telephone tutors and we spent time together at the MTC as well. His family lives in the south of the Veracruz Mission in a large seaport where there is much oil exploration and shipping. The city is Coatzacoalcos. He also served a mission in Mexico. He is a fine young man with a humble spirit. One of his MTC assignments is to go to SLC on a frequent basis and tutor Elder Holland in Spanish.

One of the tasks I had was to practice Spanish by teaching doctrine to the tutors. Here, I am teaching them from the scriptures and from chapter four of "Preach My Gospel" on the Holy Spirit of Promise.

You can see a volunteer named Maribel. She is a native of Merida, Mexico, in the Yucatan. When she was 8 years old, missionaries passed by her home and gave her a Book of Mormon. She began to read it and loved it. Her parents allowed her to be baptized at age 8 1/2. She went to church all alone for years. When she was 15, they allowed her to go to the Church school in Mexico City. She was married in the temple and is now a student at BYU with her husband.

Rodrigo Villardo is the other "student." He has been my main tutor since early in March. He is a remarkable young man. He and his family joined the Church in Mexico City when he was 10, I think. He attended the Church School there. He served a mission in McAllen Texas, Spanish-speaking. (His Spanish is pretty good . . . great accent.) He married a beautiful girl from Montana who is fluent in Spanish. They are both BYU students. His younger brother serves a mission now in Mexico.

It is a great experience to open the scriptures with these young people and discuss doctrine for an hour or so. It helps my Spanish and the Spirit is always there. Both Mom and I are very grateful that the Brethren have authorized tutoring, both in "Preach My Gospel" and in language. Our teachers are very dedicated to missionary work.

Mom worked harder than I did, as always, and it really paid off.

As we left Utah driving across the Salt Flats headed to Cailfornia, she just started speaking Spanish at about 90% accuracy! Que bueno!!!

This picture was taken at a little patio area just outside our Love Nest.

1 comment:

c_twohy said...

Ok, so the blog thing is new to me. I loved the pictures. Is this how we keep in touch? Or do you have an email address?
I think if you have approx. 1000 days in Vera Cruz-then I need to come at about 500ish days:) So see you about mid 2010! Maybe I could sneak a Walnut Creek grandson in my suitcase.
Im sure you guys are extremely busy so my feelings wont be hurt if you cant respond. I will check the blog every so often to see how you are doing.
Things here are good. We love our living arrangement, we have not felt like we are in the way of each other yet. Kris and Trent are in YM/YW. I am the 4th Sunday RS teacher, Nick is a councilor to an inactive teachers qoroum pres(fun). Dan has yet to receive a calling-and that is very hard on him-he loves to serve. We have asked and not yet recieved visiting teaching and home teaching routes. This ward is small and a bit lazadazical about losts of things-i wont bore you with the details.
Not sure when the fowlers are expected to arrive-or where they will be living while their house is under construction. Havent yet seen them at church.
Miss you, Cindy