Ruymán David Hernández Montero of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain

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    Ruymán David Hernández Montero of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain

    Nine-year-old Ruymán delights in taking care of his baby brother, Brandon. He is always eager to hold Brandon, feed him, change his diaper, and sing him to sleep.

    Something else that brings great pleasure to Ruymán’s life is music. He likes to dance and loves to sing, especially Church hymns. “I Am a Child of God” is his favorite song. When he grows up, Ruymán would like to be a professional singer.

    Basketball, soccer, skateboarding, and swimming are the sports Ruymán enjoys. He also likes to watch TV and videos, as well as talk on his walkie-talkie. Art is his favorite subject at school, and he likes to draw all kinds of things.

    Ruymán loves his parents very much. His mother works in the governor’s office, and his father is an English teacher. They often go to the mountains or beach for a picnic or barbecue. The black sandy beaches are a unique sight on the island.

    Tenerife Island is one of the thirteen islands that make up Spain’s Canary Islands. Because ferocious dogs lived there long ago, the islands were named Canaria from the Latin word canis (dog). The islands are located in the Atlantic Ocean about 97 kilometers off the northwest coast of Africa. Members of the Church live on at least five of the seven inhabited islands. Missionary work has been so successful on the islands that a separate mission was established for them.

    Ruymán and his family attend the Santa Cruz de Tenerife Branch, Santa Cruz de Tenerife Canary Islands District. Sister Hernández is the Primary president; Brother Hernández is the district Scout leader. Ruymán knows that it’s important to attend Church and learn about the gospel. All the children in his branch attend the same Primary class. Ruymán eagerly looks forward to fast Sunday each month. He has borne his testimony in their little branch every fast Sunday since he was three years old and is often the first one to do so. The other branch members have told him that he inspires them to bear their testimonies.

    Family home evening is an important family activity. Ruymán likes everything about family home evening, especially the food! Stew is his favorite dish.

    The family enjoys celebrating Christmas each year. Then, on January 5, they celebrate the Wise Men’s visit to the Baby Jesus. This day is called “The Day of the Three Kings.” On this day, children leave their shoes outside—hoping they will be filled with toys, candy, and fruit. They also put out water for the camels, and milk and cookies for the kings. Another celebration on the island takes place at the end of January, when there is a huge carnival and a parade. One night during this celebration, a dance, a party, and a costume competition is held at the meetinghouse for all the members.

    Ruymán is a happy boy with a contagious smile. He brings a lot of happiness into the lives of his baby brother, his parents, his friends, and the branch members.

    [photos] Photography by Julie Wardell

    [photos] Ruymán delights in taking care of his baby brother, Brandon. He loves to play at the park and participate in traditional festivities and Church activities with friends from the Tenerife Branch.