Temuco Team Updates 4 and 5

6/5/09

Family and friends,

All is well here in Temuco. Classes are running smoothly as the students are learning much and my Spanish is even improving in leaps and bounds. Lately for the introduction to each class period, we have introduced one stanza per day of “Amazing Grace.” Wednesday, we reviewed the whole song from beginning to end, and then continued class with the first accumulative review. Today as we introduced new material again and we began to teach them the first stanza of “Onward Christian Soldiers.” The students seem to enjoy the hymns quite well, even though my voice is not the best. But they are forgiving, despite my shortcomings.

Thursday, Andreas and I, accompanied by Freddy (the taxi driver whose house we visited in the countryside) visited the “Wall Street Institute,” an international organization committed to assisting locals learn English as a second language. While there, Andreas left his resume and we met with the assistant director of the institute. For Andreas, such a place could provide him with a steady source of income if he were to decide to return to Chile and serve under Tom for Vision for Chile. Andreas would like all of you to pray that “that God would help me discern His will if I should stay in Chile and continue teaching English classes.”

It is fun to see relationships develop both with the students and other acquaintances in the community. For instance, I have a membership at a local gym where I spend about an hour per day in between our schedules. The men who come in at the same time as I are always eager to learn North American techniques for lifting and English words for certain exercises and body parts. Everyone enjoys hearing about my studies at Crown, my equipo de futbol Americano (or American football team), what we are doing here in Temuco, my connections with Chile, and so forth. Through such contacts I am able to witness a bit and share what I believe, although our conversations are limited to how far our “Spanglish” can take us.

I would like to thank you all for your continued prayers. Please continue to pray for energy, efficiency, and patience and that we would continue to commit all of our actions for the Glory of God. Heather would also like everyone to pray for her that she would be able to “establish stronger relationships with the girls at the seminary and that God would use this experience to deepen her passion in living for Him.”

In His service,
Ben

06/09/09

Family and friends,

Greetings and bendiciones from Temuco! Things have been great lately as the classes have continued to move quite smoothly since we arrived over three weeks ago.

Last Saturday, Heather and I walked to the Pablo Neruda National Railway Museum on the other side of Temuco. The museum remembers Chile’s impressive history of miles and miles of track stretching up and down the diverse face of Chile’s countryside by displaying several engines and cars gathered under the roof of the old railway station. The museum was named after Neruda because he grew up riding trains with his father (a railway employee) seeing all that the country had to offer, and later, grew up in Temuco with his father. A national figure of Chile and recipient of the Nobel Prize of Literature (1971), Neruda wrote about some of his experiences on the massive engines. “The Pablo Neruda National Railway Museum was inaugurated in February 24, 2004, when the hundredth anniversary of the poet’s birth was commemorated” (Karina Jozami). We had a good time, and barely made it back in time for lunch.

After lunch, Pastor Luis (the pastor of the C&MA Mission to the Mapuche in Chapod and resident administrator of the seminary) took us to the Saturday evening worship practice and Bible study. After the study and announcements, Pastor Luis confirmed the dates and times that I would return to teach the youth how to play “American” football.

That Sunday, after taking communion with no electricity at the 2nd Alliance Church of Temuco, we were treated to lunch and an afternoon in the country with Rafael and Ruth Gonzalez and their oldest son Rafael JR. Rafael SR is the pastor of a local church and is currently training to become a certified bus driver. Ruth works as the director of several area schools (which I believe is something to the equivalent of a superintendent). At their country home we played foosball, hiked around the property, and played with their German Sheppard and Collie. After a fun afternoon and more beautiful sights in the country, we headed home.

As you continue to keep us in your prayers, we ask that you would please continue to pray about the H1N1 virus that is spreading not only in America and Chile, but all over the world. Thank you again, and God Bless!

Ben

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