Tuesday, July 7, 2009


Hello family!

Man, crazy week - this time really does fly. Well, I'm sending home my trainer Elder Gurrola tomorrow! It's hard to believe - I'm going to have to get used to someone else 24/7... but man, it’s weird. Weirder for him. He doesn't have anyone to really email this week, so I might have to be briefer on this. We'll see. His dad is coming up on Thursday, and they are going to drive around and tour the people he's met (100's) all over this part of Utah. Sounds like a cool way to end the mission, maybe. We'll see. I feel trunky already, haha (trunky is an elder that is getting preoccupied with coming home at the end of his mission). It's kinda weird hearing all this “after-mission” counsel from people and plans for family to come, etc. Weird. 19 months left, its flying! I'll miss Elder Gurrola, we were good friends here. He's a nut, but a great missionary.

My new companion is..... Elder Minson! Haven't met him yet, but on the phone he asked me "the most critical of all questions" - "What color is your toothbrush?" We'll get along fine. I'm staying here in Buenaventura, so I get to know these people a little better, figure out how to communicate with them some more, etc. - hopefully I can help Elder Minson run this area effectively, yikes.

That's way cool about Terran and the empanada craving - once Elder Gurrola had to floss his teeth reallllllly bad and it led us straight to a member who was in desperate need of some testimony and help (sorry if I told that before). Its crazy how stuff like that happens, but that’s how it is on the mission - the Lord works through other people to bless lives.

Sounds like it was a spectacular 4th of July - man, a food parade, "party poppers"from South Carolina (yeah, right)... sounds like fun - That's sweet that you all managed so many people - high 5, that’s a feat. That's something I think I'm going to miss more and more, I loved family gatherings, seeing so many people that were my family. It’s great though to see it’s all still going on in some other part of the world, so I'll participate long distance style. Our 4th of July consisted of talking to some of our old neighbors in Riverdale about listening to old 80's music from America that had drifted down to Columbia, and rocking out to it as teenagers, but not knowing what any of the words meant, haha... then early curfew of 9:00, wheee.....

I feel almost ashamed at how rich I've lived in my life. There are people who are suffering all over, desperate for ANY job, ANY money, a place to LIVE - its humbling. I've spent a lot of time this week learning from people about life in other countries. I understand why people come here illegally - life in other countries is horrible. In America the police don't pull you over and force you to pay them money, people don't rampage like they do there, people don't live in fear that the police or government are going to destroy your family for money and such. I won't write it all, but it’s sad - in the Book of Mormon it talks about corruption in the government, secret combinations, murders, etc - before the coming of Jesus Christ. That’s a type of what will pass before the Second Coming - I always figured that was GOING to happen. I'm learning that outside of the USA, it’s ALREADY happening. It’s hard to see these nice, happy people in their nice, peaceful little homes and stuff as coming from these backgrounds. Don't spend more than you need, and do NOT take what we have for granted. I used to worry about whether our family's 3rd laptop could get wireless internet instead of using a cable. Good grief.

I think that's one of the greatest gifts of a mission - seeing the world as it really is, what is important and what’s not. Material things don't matter. People matter. I will be different after the mission, I think (well, I HOPE). I am getting a better perspective on how to use time better. I wish I had spent much more time before my mission getting to know people in my life more, even in my own family. So much of what I thought was everything.... doesn't matter! It’s weird. Jeffrey, take it as a lesson - you'll be doing this in a few years - just make sure to make time for what’s really important. (and I know now it’s not Facebook, lol).

Thank you all SO MUCH for all the letters and packages this week. Aunt Jill/Joey/Farrells, the letters are always good (ha, Joey, yeah, all the music you listed is definitely here and thriving in our apartment complex). The pictures are awesome too - congrats again Steven! The pictures of the play looked way awesome - I didn't recognize Holly and Amy at first! Two little Siamese girls for sisters, ha... and Heidi looked quite pretty as a wife - looked like a great play! I loved all the letters, I'll try to write back to all of them – it’s kinda hard, sorry! Amy, I didn't know you could write that much! I loved them all, but don't have them with me right now, so I'll respond to them later. It was very cool though, thank you!

I'll be sending pictures hopefully in the next few weeks, so be ready...Ok, well, I gots to be going! I love you all, and pray for you all the time. For all of you I don't get to write very much, I'm sorry. You're not forgotten, I promise, I just haven't figured out how to write to everyone yet!

I know this Gospel is true. Truth has been restored to the earth. This is the true gospel of our Savior Jesus Christ. He lives. He loves us. He knows us. I know that we are all in the hands of a loving Heavenly Father, who before this life, loved us, cared for us, taught us. He knows us perfectly, and His only work is to get us Home safely, and He gives his full attention to it without any distractions or other hobbies. I have felt His love this week. We can talk to Him in prayer. Seek Him. That's what life is really about. Seek Him, and come closer to Him with those we love. It's true! I'm glad to be able to share it with the brothers and sisters that are searching. Don't take it for granted!

Elder Christopher Thelin!

P.S. No, I don't actually have a new nametag, but I WAS thinking about it. Heh. Maybe when one of these breaks, (you go through a good 10 or 12 at least I hear). It's bound to happen riding bikes everywhere and such. (oh yeah, we STILL don't have a car, AND we don't get bus passes this month, so it’s bikes. sweet.)

P.P.S.The continuation of the silly story: but THEN a thundering sound was heard. The Yubs scattered into the woods. BOOM. Another one. Something was coming. Amy scrunched her eyebrows and ignited the lightsaber. "COME AND GET IT!!!!!" she yelled at the woods. Heidi quickly slid the raft into the river beside them, and Luke Skywalker jumped into the van and backed it onto the raft. BOOM. The YubYubs forgot Tippy and Tanny, so Holly grabbed them and put them on the raft. BOOM. Amy waved the lightsaber around some more. Suddenly a TYRANNASAURUS REX BURST OUT OF THE TREeS AND WAS RUNNING AT THE GIRLS! "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" screamed Amy and turned around (you can't kill a Rex with a lightsaber,, everyone knows that). They all ran into the van. "This'll be just like flying an Xwing" Luke said as he stomped on the pedal and the van/raft sped backwards into the river. TheT rex was still coming. "Can they swim?" Holly asked. "Uhh....." said Heidi.... and THEN....


  1. =) I think you're learning what asi es la vida means, in more than one way.

    The nonugly half aka the fantastic one aka Layna says Hi Chris!!

  2. Chris, I mean Elder Thelin, you are terrific. You are gaining such a great perspective on life and blessings. Thanks for sharing it...it will remind me of what's important here. Also, don't worry if you can't write letters to everyone. We love reading your weekly letter on the blog. Love you!