Yesterday, I met a new student for the first time who wants to learn to speak Spanish. We met at the Spanish Bible class, and I realized she didn’t know how to greet all her new friends in the class who speak Spanish. She isn’t one of these like so many in America who took high school Spanish, so I decided I needed to teach her to greet her new Spanish speaking friends, and that is what I am going to do for you. I am also going to put a few Christian phrases at the end to facilitate in beginning to understand in a Spanish Bible class.
Hola = hello, or hi (remember not to pronounce the “h” and to make the “o” a long “o” and the “a” and “a” like in “father.”)
Buenos Dias = Good Day or Good Morning
Buenos Tardes = Good Afternoon (This seems to go on much longer than our afternoon in English. In what we might call early evening, they will still be greeting one another with Buenos Tardes.)
Buenos Noches = Good Evening or Good Night. (This is the way to say “hello” in the later evening, and also the way to tell them Good Night before they sleep.)
Adios = Good Bye.
Hasta Manaña = See you tomorrow or Until tomorrow. (Literally, the “hasta” means “until.”)
Hasta Luego = See you later or Until later.
Asking How People Are or How it is Going and Responding:
¿Como esta' usted? = How are you? (This is is a very formal greeting used only with people you don't know.)
¿Como estas? = How are you? (This is a bit friendlier greeting used with your friends. I usually use this when I talk to my friends in the Spanish Bible class.) Estoy muy bien. = I am fine. (This is the response to both ¿Como esta' usted? and ¿Como estas? Muy bien,¿y tu? = very well, and you? (This is also a good response for both of the questions.)
¿Como te sientes? = How are you feeling? (If you know someone has been feeling bad, this is a good way to greet them. In this case, there is a special kind of Spanish pronoun here called a "reflexive pronoun." It comes before a reflexive verb. It is a direct object pronoun."te" means "you" or "yourself.") ¿Como se siente? = How are you feeling? (more formal). How is he feeling? How is she feeling? (This reflexive pronoun: "se." could mean several things.) Me siento bien. = I am feeling fine or I feel fine. ("Me" is another reflexive pronoun pointing back at yourself.) No me siento bien = I am not feeling fine, I feel fine, or I'm not feeling well. or I don't feel well. (Tje "no" means "not" in Spanish.) ¿Que pasa? = How is it going? or What is happening? Nada = nothing (Often, this is the response to "¿Que pasa?")
Es una Biblia. = It is a Bible. (You don’t need a pronoun for “it” because “es” is third person singular, and “it” is implied. Since “Biblia” (Bible) ends with an “a,” “una” (a) must also end with an “a.” “Biblia” is a feminine noun, and “una” is a feminine article, and we must match everything with either masculine or feminine in Spanish.)
Amo a Dios. = I love God. (“Amo” is a first person singular verb because it ends in an “a,” so we don’t need “yo” (I) because “I” is implied. “Amo” comes from the verb “amar” which means “to love.” “Dios” means “God.” If you see “a” before a noun in Spanish, that means that noun is the direct object. It only comes before direct objects that are people, not before object or animals.)
Jesus es el hijo de Dios. = Jesus is the son of God. (Remember “j” in “Jesus” will be pronounced like an “h.” The word “el,” in this case, means “the,” and it is masculine. If “el” had an accent mark over it, like this ” ‘el,” it means “he.” The word “hijo” means “son.” The word “de” means “of.”)
Cristo es el hijo de Dios. = Christ is the son of God.
Jesucristo es el hijo de Dios. = Jesus Christ is the son of God.
Amo a Jesus. = I love Jesus.
Jesus me amo. = Jesus loves me. (In this case, “me” is pronounced “meh,” not like the English “me.” It is a direct object pronoun, and it goes best before the verb.)
‘El es mi hermano. = He is my brother. (Spanish speaking people like to call one another “brothers and sisters” when they are around other Christians. Remember that ” ‘el” withe the apostrophe means “he.” The word “mi” means “my.” The word “hermano” begins with an “h,” so don’t pronounce the “h,” and it means “brother.” Use “es” for “is” if you are identifying someone or something.)
Ella es mi hermana. = She is my sister. (The word “ella” has those two “l’s” together in the middle of the word, and the two “l’s” together are pronounced like and English “y,” so “ella” is pronounced “eya.” “Ella” means “she.” The “a” is on the end of “hermana” because this word is feminine, and it means “sister.” The “o” on the end of “hermano” means it is masculine.)