Sunday, January 9, 2011

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Another day of travel, farewells, mail and visits. We started early in Bani at the Zone Leaders apartment to drop off mail and supplies. We picked up mail and a pair of shoes for Elder De Leon in Azua. We dropped them off in Azua on our way home this afternoon. We also stopped in Vicente Noble at the apartment of the “South Ayudantes” with the mail for the rest of the mission in the South. They gave us more mail for the office as well as “Reembolsos” (Reimbursements) to process.

We made it to the Neyba Branch in time for the last half of Priesthood/R.S. meeting and the rest of the block. Neyba is the branch where I was privileged and honor of served as Branch Pres. for almost 8 months. Hna. Johnson and I love these good and faithful people.

It was a bitter sweet goodbye as we said our final “Despedida” (Farewell). Like Hymn #88 in the Spanish Hymnal “Placentero nos es trabajar” says, “¡Oh hermanos, adiós, pues, adiós! El momento de ir vi no ya. Si guardamos la fe en el gran Dios, nos veremos aún más allá.” (Farewell brethren and sisters farewell, we have come to the close of our call. True and faithful we stand ‘til the end then we’ll meet once again over there.) We will probably never see these good saints again in this life but if we remain faithful we will meet again on the other side of the Vail.

This hymn, “Placentero nos es trabajar” has no equivalent in the English Hymnal. Even so, it is a favorite hymn of all Spanish speaking saints all over the world. It is now one of my favorite hymns too. The tune is a familiar Protestant hymn but the lyrics are uniquely LDS. The words were written in 1910 by the first lamanite missionary called in this dispensation, Elder Andres C. Gonzalez. He was jailed for preaching the gospel in Mexico City during the Mexican revolution. He faced the possibility of a firing squad the next morning. He wrote the lyrics not knowing if he would ever see his wife and child again in this life.

Tonight was probably the last time we will webcam our sons and grandchildren. We’ve loved the webcam these past 18 months.

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