Monday, April 25, 2016


Good day,

What did I even do this week. I don't know.

Monday we were over in St Florent for a meeting with a member's friend. went on a hike and found wild garlic. I ate way too much because it was just blowing my mind. At the beach, I found a lot of cool shells. We got some ice cream together. I chose the honey ice cream because Corsica is known for honey and it drop kicked my mouth into a vortex of warmth and ice that made me really happy. We ate dinner together afterwards and had a really good conversation.

I have no clue what I did Tuesday I'm sorry.

Wednesday was an exchange with Ajaccio. We all hung out down there for the exchange. I was with Elder Pesnell and Oborn. Oborn is in my group (arrived in France the same time). We taught a couple lessons and ran around knocking a bunch of beautiful houses. At night, we met a member down there named Karim. He's an awesome guy but he's super wild and hard to understand. He calls me Carrie. I don't know where he came up with that nickname though.

On the morning of Thursday, we ran to the beach and made a short video for Sister Brown. They asked us to do one for Mother's Day. Then we did a study and drove home. The inside part of Corsica is insanely beautiful. There are more green things there than I ever thought existed in the whole world. Thursday night was some fun knocking. We actually found a member family that didn't know there was a church in Bastia. They are a little hesitant to come back but they will. We talked to a guy building a pool in his yard and he gave us a whole bag of lemons from his tree. I made some bomb lemonade.

On Friday we taught three lessons to people. I swear the goal of all three of them was to cut us off as many times as possible. Welcome to France haha. On the way back home, instead of dinner, we stopped by the beach and skipped rocks. I spent my time finding seashells and Pesnell yelled out to me, "how's it going Shelly?" How cute. Now he calls me Shelly.

Saturday was really fun because we went up to Patrick's house and helped him with his garden. We harvested some onions. There were a couple filles there playing Bruno Mars. Patrick made us a pizza. We then had a branch council and we showed up in service clothes. Oops. That night, we did weekly planning, which is always exhausting but I had a good time and I drew a pretty picture.

On Sunday we had church. Also, here on Corsica, there are a lot of people that go up into their villages on the weekends. So usually on Sunday's we will go run around knocking a village. It's funny because some of the houses seem to not have an address. We met a couple of cool people. One girl spoke English and was an exchange student in Oregon. She said she met a Mormon there. This Mormon told the lady that she (the Mormon) didn't have the right to listen to music. I was shocked and I said maybe she wasn't really a Mormon. She said that she was. Then I said, "maybe she's just weird." The others got a good laugh out of that one but I was 100% serious.

Today we went to the beach and I got more shells.

Peace out until next week,
Elder Marshall Underwood

 Mission apartment

Monday, April 18, 2016

French Throat

Good morning!

It's a cloudy day here in Bastia and I'm happy to be able to communicate with you all!

This Tuesday started as normal with a meeting with the Vendassi couple. I usually get a little bored in these meetings so my "notes" section in my planner turns into a giant doodle. In this meeting though, Elder Vendassi said that I am getting a really good accent and that my throat is turning French. The secret is to eat so many baguettes that your throat gets confused and thinks that it is French. Just kidding, the real secret is to say the word 'arbre' about a billion times and annoy the heck out your companions. We bounced from that meeting and helped someone move but we were in our church clothes. Elder Hansen ended up spilling sunflower seed oil all over his pants. The game for the rest of the evening was "hide Hansens crotch so it doesn't look like he peed his pants." We totally succeeded I believe and it was quite an accomplishment. After some missionary work, we went home and made cookies for some investigators and finished around 10.

We had a district meeting on Wednesday and the assistants were there. They were a little late and Frère Pesnell decided to do a role play. Basically, when they came in, no one really acknowledged them and we started singing. They were so confused and it was hilarious. Pesnell then got up and talked to everyone in the room except the assistants and then explained that this is exactly not what we should do when we invite people to church. They then realized that it was a joke and we had a good time. I got to go on an exchange with Elder Huntsman and it was fun. He's a great teacher and he had a good time together. I also got to see elder Menzel who was over in Bergerac when I was in Périgueux. It was a good day.

On Thursday we played soccer with some kids. They were nice but kind of scared of religion. We went to visit a less active. Every time we go over, she gives us a yogurt drink. So we each have a cup. But this time, Hansen drank all three cups and it was really  impressive. This night we took cookies to someone and they totally denied them and it made me sad. That's okay though. More cookies for me.

Friday we had a branch movie night at the church. They watched brave but we did our weekly planning.

Saturday we visited one of our Amis. She gave me a drum. It's from Africa.

On Sunday we had 3 of our Amis (literally friends but in missionary terms, investigators) at church and that was an insane miracle. We got to have a class specifically with them! One of them started going off on the most random of topics. I whipped our scriptures that answered her questions very simply but once she got an answer, she asked a different question. I feel like she is one of those people that just wants others to think that she is smart and philosophical. I'll just keep answering her questions with the scriptures until she runs out of them I guess. On Sunday night, elder Pesnell made me feel really good by telling me that I have this facial expression when I teach that immediately makes him feel the spirit. What a guy. I'm having a blast down here. Hansen will go home at the end of the transfer and I think my plan is to just run him into the ground with missionary work before he's released.

That's all folks,
Elder Marshall Underwood

Monday, April 11, 2016

Sponge Bob


This week was amazing. Let me fill you in on a little info of this branch. It is very small but also the best. For example, our Sunday school president is 15 and a rockstar. There is a senior couple and the husband acts as branch president. Elder Pesnell is the second counselor and there is another counselor down in Ajaccio.

This week was amazing. There is a lot to do and sometimes it is hard to find time to go tracting. But, I have found that in the time that we have, we are amazingly effective. I feel like we have taught like 3 lessons a day down here.

On Wednesday, I had the privilege to go on exchange with Ajaccio. It was great down there with Elders Ottesen and Oborn. Oborn came in with me. I also took the drive from Bastia to Ajaccio which is incredible. On exchange, it seemed like we ran into every evangelist on the island. They were all really nice and we talked with them a lot. I was really thankful that day to have been born into this church because I didn't have to go find it. I have so many blessings thanks to that.

Thursday was a zone training. It was weird because we just skyped into the meeting. We are so far away from everyone here but I don't mind.

Friday was the best day. We went to see some less actives and then found people. But, the best part came in the night. We have an ami named Patrick and he had a baptismal date for May 21.But, we just got a goal next week to baptize 91 people by the end of this transfer. So, we decided that we should try to change it but we weren't really sure where he stood. We had dinner with him at the Vendassi (senior couple) household. He got there and we just went straight into the restoration. I was amazed to see, as e lesson went on, his understanding of the apostasy, the priesthood and the Book of Mormon. In fact, he straight up told us that the Book of Mormon is true. The re-baptismal invitation was coming up and it was looking like it would land on me. We whipped out Mosiah 18:8-10. As he read aloud, I saw something in his head just click as he got to verse 10 (go and read the scripture for the full effect). I invited him and he replied that he has been preparing since the first time that we asked and he would love to. At this point, everything went quiet and all eyes were on Vendassi. He struggle to hold back tears as he testified that Patrick was being brought into the gospel for all of his ancestors that never 
had a chance. Vendassi offered him a blessing and he started to choose who he wanted to do it. I truthfully shied away a little but then Patrick asked me. As I started the blessing, I felt the spirit so incredibly strong. After the blessing, I went into the bathroom and dropped to my knees praising God for the miracle I just saw worked in the life of another.

Basically, all a mission is is working hard and watching as God works miracles before your eyes.

I later watched Pesnell shove a copious amount of food in his pockets because he was full.

Sunday came around and this branch is insane. Patrick came and he got up to bear his testimony. What a guy. What a guy.

Today, we helped someone move and we found this sweet beach over by Saint Florent.

Well. That's all :)

Elder Marshall Underwood

Monday, April 4, 2016

The Red Sun Rises

Hello again,

Well, last week started with a lot of traveling. I got on a train in Perigueux at 8:30 and arrived in Marseille at 5:30. Then, I drove to Toulon with elder pesnell. We got on the boat at 9 and arrived in Ajaccio at boat was awesome and we just had a little cabin with beds and stuff. We then drove to Bastia and got there at around 10 on Tuesday. I was a little traveled out but we got straight to work.

President told me that the work was on fire down here and I didn't actually believe him too much. However, it is. We teach a ton and our finding sessions are so efficient.

So, my comps. Well, I lucked out on this one. Firstly, elder Hansen: Elder Hansen is a last transfer missionary and one of the best I've seen. He's an incredible teacher that knows the scriptures like the back of his hand. He's always smiling and knows how to make people feel good. Elder Pesnell: elder Pesnell is one of the funniest guys that I have met and a very efficient missionary. Here's a story. We drove out to this investigators house that has about 30 dogs in the front yard. We taught them and when we were leaving, elder Pesnell got peed on. I didn't know this until he came into the apartment and said "alright which one of you scum nuggets is wiping the urine off of my shoe?"

The week was pretty amazing as far as missionary work goes. We taught a ton.

My favorite part about the apartment is that the window in the toilet room faces east and we are really close to the ocean. It is to the point that if you are a few feet back from the window, you can't see land. This Friday morning, I watched a beautiful sun rise over the Mediterranean island of Elba while I emptied my bladder. I've lost myself in luxury.

Conference was great. We watched it at the ward building and I was amazed by the inspired words said by the prophet and others. What a blessing you have over there in Utah to be so close to those that hold the fullest power of God here on the earth.

If you want to see a place where I taught our friend Patrick this week, you can look up Sisco, France.

That's all for now, I love you,
Ancien sousbois

Elder Pesnell (from West Point, UT), Elder Hansen (from Kaysville, UT), Elder Underwood