Monday, February 28, 2011


Joel's Family

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February 28, 2011:

Things are going really well here. A mission is a very strange break from the rest your life, and it really gives you time to think about, well, everything, but I've been thinking a lot about how my life has gone and what I'd like to improve, and setting a lot of goals for what I'd like to do after. It's funny, I've heard quite a few missionaries mention how much they want to read when they get back. We don't realize how good things, such as culture, are until we're outside of them. But there's a whole lot of other stuff filling that time that we could be sitting on a couch watching Lost.

We set up a baptism for an 8-year old kid whose mom is a member on Sunday. It was really fun, and we had some of our investigators stay after church to see how a baptismal service is. The kid that was baptized, Joel, was completely crazy. He came into Priesthood meeting about half an hour earlier and said something like, "Are we ready to baptism me? My class already finished, so I'm ready." He was jumping up and down in the font and I had to kind of fight him to get him in the water because he was so excited. He wouldn't plug his nose, so once he came out of the water, he said, "I almost died!" I mentioned Angie in an earlier e-mail, we've been teaching her in English for two weeks, which has been very strange. She was at the baptism of Joel, and as it was starting she came up to us and asked if she could get baptized! That was a really cool experience. She's left to Phoenix today, so we told her that it would be a lot better if she gets baptized there. She was pretty bummed, but it is a lot better for her this way. Her family will give her a really hard time, so she wanted to just get baptized here without them influencing her. Now, she'll have to be a lot stronger if she wants to follow through and be baptized, which will make her a much stronger member in the end. And she'll get to know the members and the missionaries there a lot better.


Elder Tingey

Monday, February 21, 2011

Elder Tingey Update - Lots of Music

Hi. First thing, I don't think I ever remembered to mention that USPS is supposedly the safest for sending packages.
Also, hi! Elder Brassard and I have been working really hard for the last week. I definitely learned how extremely important it is to be organized in our agendas. We spent a day meeting lots of new people, and both of us assumed the other one was writing all of the addresses and appointment information down. We ended up spending some time trying to find the houses again
(and I've hopefully attached a picture of this neighborhood, in which all of the houses look exactly the same). So from now on, I'm all about writing everything down.
I've been very surprised by the amount of musical stuff I've been doing. We sing at the majority of the lessons we teach. I now play piano for both branches in Costa Rica. I prepared a choir for a ward conference, which was really complicated in Spanish since I know very limited musical vocab. I also got to prepare a special number on guitar for our baptismal service this week. It's been fun.
We are currently teaching a girl named Angie, who lives with her cousins here in Costa Rica who are less active members. When we first met her, we taught her for a few minutes, and I asked her to read a scripture. She said, "I can't read very well in Spanish," in English. We both sat kind of shocked for a few seconds, and I just asked, "Is English your first language?" Turns out she's American and is from Phoenix. So we have been teaching her in English which is SO fun. And hard. We stumble around the language trying to translate back out of Spanish. So that was really strange. But she's been super excited about learning what we're teaching and came to church with us yesterday.
Dillon's going to Brazil?! That is so cool. There are some family members who I'm sure will have lots of advice about the country and about Portuguese. Congratulations Dillon! I will try to send some advice next week when I have more time. I ended up spending a good portion of my e-mail time trying to figure out how to send pictures, so I've now run out of time. I've got it down now, so I should be able to send more of the pictures I wanted to and send a fuller e-mail next time. I don't know which pictures Elder Davis sent through his mom, so I'm probably sending some repeats.

Love, Elder Tingey

Monday, February 14, 2011

Elder Tingey Contacted a Moving Vehicle

Hello, hello, hello.

First of all, I think the easiest way for me to recieve letters is just through this e-mail account! Dear Elder is complicated, and I don't know why Pony Express style mail exists anymore. I can recieve pictures and anyone is allowed to e-mail me through here!

We recieved changes and I am now with Elder Brassard in the other area of Costa Rica! Elder Sanvicente finished his mission and went home to Mexico, and Elder Richins is Elder Davis's (Davis'?) new companion. We all still live together for the time being. I worked with Elder Brassard in Culiacán for my first couple of days in Mexico. He is a really cool Elder who is a convert from Texas. He went to BYU Idaho, and used to work for American Airlines, so he would get free flights everywhere, and one time was in Orlando for twenty seconds because his arriving flight had been delayed and his arriving flight was leaving really quickly.

I contacted a moving vehicle yesterday. That was interesting. Lots of people yell, "Where are you from?" or "White boys!" or for some reason "What's crack-alackin'?" I think I heard that about twice in America, but about 6 people have yelled it at me since I got here. Anyways, we were riding bikes in Costa Rica, and a truck was driving by me when the passenger yelled, "Wherd ard jyou from?!" So I pulled my bike over and grabbed onto the side of the truck and talked to him for a while while the driver continued through the city.

Mom, that was neat the you mentioned The Family: A Proclamation to the World. We've been sharing that with lots of families lately. I hadn't read it for a while before my mission, but it is a really cool document. I like that it mentions the importance of work and recreational activities. Families are pretty important. We often start off a lesson and we say something like, "What is the most important for you?" Everyone says, "Pues, mi familia." I don't know if everyone would give that same answer in America, but here, it's very easy for people to see the blessings that they can recieve through the Gospel because all of them apply to families. The Gospel blesses families in so many ways. The Gospel is primarily knowledge. It is sometimes defined as Heavenly Father's plan for us and sometimes and the teachings of Jesus Christ, but these are essentially the same. The Savior taught that through faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end, we are able to return to live in the presence of our Heavenly Father after this life, and our families can be together for eternity. The knowledge of these essential truths apply to our everyday lives, and create unity in families.

We're having a lot of fun! For the last week we've hardly had time to to contact or try to find new people because we currently have so many people to visit.
I'm out of time.


Elder Tingey