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Nahuatl Update – Week #12


I realize that I titled this post in such a way that might lead you to believe that I have been posting an update every week. And while I have certainly not done that thus far, I am going to begin this practice, mostly to ensure that I work hard to make sure there is something to report each week.

Yes, it’s week 12 of 17 in my mission to reach a conversational level in the Nahuatl language, and I would say it’s going pretty well. I’m not as far along as I would like, and I will blame that on a responsibility I took on to teach a Bible class on the prophets every Wednesday night. This has been taking up a lot of time, and while I don’t regret the decision, I do wish I had more time to devote to Nahuatl.

Be that as it may, I have been practicing on a regular basis with my Nahuatl-speaking neighbours. I set for myself the rule that at least every other day I will speak in a non-English language (preferably Nahuatl), in a conversation that is more than exchanging pleasantries. I’ve stuck to this, but it may be time to step it up, either by doing it more often, or setting aside time to sit down with native speakers and have an extensive dialogue more often.

I began learning Nahuatl five years ago, and up until this mission, I had just been studying the grammar off and on. As a result, I have a good knowledge of how the language works; I just need to work on proficiency and listening comprehension. Some of my neighbours talk rather fast, and it takes them repeating it a few times before I catch on, but that is just a stage in learning the language—I remember when I was there with Spanish.

So I have five weeks left to become conversational in Nahuatl, and that also means that in five weeks I will be traveling south to Mexico! I am very excited. It’s one of my favourite parts of the world, and I haven’t been there in two years.

¡Hasta mostla! Nimomachtijtok chikawak.

Hymn of the Week – Hallelujah, Praise Jehovah

Words from Psalm 148, arranged by William Kirkpatrick (1894)
Music by William Kirkpatrick (1894)
Sound recording

Hallelujah, praise Jehovah,
from the heavens praise His name;
Praise Jehovah in the highest,
all His angels praise proclaim.
All His hosts together praise Him,
sun and moon and stars on high;
Praise Him, O ye heaven of heavens,
and ye floods above the sky.

Let them praises give Jehovah,
for His name alone is high,
And His glory is exalted,
far above the earth and sky.

Let them praises give Jehovah,
they were made at His command;
Them forever He established,
His decree shall ever stand,
From the earth, O praise Jehovah,
all ye floods, ye dragons all,
Fire and hail and snow and vapors,
stormy winds that hear His call.

All ye fruitful trees and cedars,
all ye hills and mountains high,
Creeping things and beasts and cattle,
birds that in the heavens fly,
Kings of earth, and all ye people,
princes great, earth’s judges all;
Praise His name, young men and maidens,
agèd men, and children small.