Monday, July 25, 2016


On Monday, we ate with the Vendassi family (probably the best chicken that I have ever had) just before we took a boat to the continent. This night was the beginning of our strange journey that kept me away from Bastia almost all week.
On Tuesday we showed up in Toulon and did an exchange there. Elders Steadman and Loveland are great guys and we did some fun work. Not much to report because it wasn't my sector but a lady gave me a book of poems.

We woke up the next morning to drive to aix en Provence. We had a great time there and I got to see a lot of elders that I have missed. However, at the end of the conference, I was looking out at the elders and they all seemed depressed. I know that Satan is really working on us and it's hard right now for a lot of missionaries. I hope we can all find strength beyond our own. That night we drove to Nice for a zone leader exchange.

On Thursday we were in Nice all day and I got to see the promenade des Anglais. It was really humbling to stand where so many people died. I hope that those of  ice can be strengthened by the message of the gospel. The exchange there was really good and I got to contact people on the bus. That's a little different but you get into really good conversations. I contacted an English girl that lives in Monaco. I asked her if that would interest her to know what the heck a Mormon is and so she gave me her number. However, I think she might be a little disappointed when I don't show up haha. We also taught a lady in Portuguese so I was really helpful. We drove that night back to Toulon.

The next day, Friday, we were on a boat all day. It was okay because elder Steadman gave me a ukulele. That night too, we went to Claudias and sang I love to see the temple and she cried and it was a really great spiritual experience.

Saturday and Sunday I got wrecked because we had to fit our week of meetings into two days. BUT on Sunday we got to watch the 24th of July broadcast and I loved it so much.

This week I really realized the significance of the sacrifice of the Savior. It never really clicked for me why he suffered. Justice requires an immediate punishment for any sin. So, when he suffered for us, he took the punishment, thus allowing us a time to change and saved us from wrath. It is now our time to work to become pure in his eyes. Tough, but doable.

Elder Marshall Underwood

Elder Woodward (people would always get our names mixed up)

Elder Lister was trained by Elder Willits (Marshall knew Elder Willits from Sandy, UT)

Cleaned out our apartment

Elder Little

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Replay Translation - Thank you Kathy Hawkins

The story of how the missionaries find the family of Silva Barbosa

Once upon a time …

April 16, 2016 The missionaries of Bastia (Elder Hansen, Elder Pesnell, Elder Underwood) are waiting for a meeting on the east side of the town of Biguglia (or the section of town), but they received a call that cancelled the meeting. Having not made a plan to replace it – the missionaries decided to go back and seek the spirit of the Lord to know which decision they should take. Elder Pesnell turned to Elder Underwood and asked him which town. Elder Underwood having sought out the spirit said Borgo and then he went to sleep in the car. The others made fun of him saying that he chose a city really far away from Bastia because he wanted to sleep on the trip. The spirit confirmed it so they went to Borgo. All three missionaries arrived in Borgo with prayer in their hearts. Payed attention to their feelings and thoughts. Elder Pesnell and Elder Underwood knew the Lord could listen to Elder Hansen who was starting to seek revelation. At the beginning of the route he said “straight ahead” and again for 2-3 streets he kept saying “straight ahead”. On the 4th one, everyone was quiet and Elder Hansen exclaimed “left!” They took a left and parked the car.
                The missionaries started to go door to door. Nobody answered. Not the first or the second. At the third door they encountered a little girl at the door. Elder Underwood responded instinctively “Are your parents here?” and the little girl ran away immediately and Elder Underwood said to his companions “we have to baptize this family.” Then, a young man came to the door and looked at them behind the door. The missionaries said “hello” to the young man and he ran away exactly like his sister had done. Finally, the mother came to the door, holding a little girl in her arms. The missionaries started to talk to her about family. She said that she knew the church. Elder Underwood supposing she didn’t know the church because a lot of people say they do or think that they do but are mistaken – he responded with a suspicious eye. She again responded that she did know the church because she was a member of the church.
                The missionaries rested awhile and for several seconds wondered how this could be possible. She wasn’t on the list of members of the church of Bastia. She explained that she just came to Corsica and she never had been to church. They made a meeting with her and left. In the car they were all surprised because of the miracle that they had seen that day.
                Time passed and the miracle happened and she is coming to church and she has a daughter Maria 11, a daughter Gabriel that is 6 and Helena that is 2. And they are coming to church and they have strengthened the branch in Bastia.

Voila – See There. There it is.

The history of how the missionaries of Bastia met Beatrice

The day was July 11, 2016 almost 3 months after the proceeding story. Elder  Underwood was the only missionary who was still there from the above mentioned group. Now they were doing missionary work with Elder Wilkey and Elder Ramsey. In doing their daily work the missionaries again searched out the inspiration like before the missionaries had made a lot of work at Borgo and they had a lot of success. It seemed to the missionaries that maybe the day to stop working the mission in Borgo had stopped (like they had knocked on all the doors). In reseeking the spirit they received inspiration to go to a specific quarter. On the map, there were not a lot of houses but they knew that it was the will of the Lord that they should go there.
And they went and they started to go door to door. The missionaries quickly realized that there was hardly anybody in that quarter that wanted to talk to them. They talked to 3 people that didn’t want to talk to them about family or God. So the faith of Elder Underwood was beginning to become weak because they were coming to the last door of the neighborhood. All of a sudden they opened the door and the missionaries knocked on the front of the property (which is the outside gate – not the door). Elder Ramsey rang again. Elder Underwood thought it was ridiculous (unuseful) to ring and he thought they weren’t going to have any success in this neighborhood. Never the less, they thought it was possible. Elder Ramsey looked to see if there was another house below. He saw a woman and instinctively said “hello”.
Elder Ramsey saw a lady and asked her if there were 2 doors for this building. She said no. It is the same building. Having broken the ice for this conversation. Elder Ramsey talked to her about the family. They realized that she spoke Portuguese instead for French. Elder Ramsey asked her if she speaks English and she didn’t. She went up the stair, but she kept talking to them. The missionaries tried to understand but they couldn’t understand. They could barely understand that she did know the Mormons. This surprised the missionaries because they hadn’t met anyone in this neighborhood that was Mormon. They said that clearly she did know the church because her parents were members of the church in Portugal. Elder Underwood responded with enthusiasm “Are you a member of the church?” She responded that her parents were members of the church but she couldn’t understand what they were asking her. Elder Underwood said “are you?” This time she understood and she said “Yes, I am a member of the church.”
The missionaries were a little bit used to this phrase because that is what people would say thinking they could get rid of the missionaries. The missionaries asked her name and kept talking to her. Elder Underwood asked Elder Ramsey to borrow the phone to call someone. They called Claudia who told her that they had a Portuguese woman that was a member of the church and she gave the phone to Beatrice (the Portuguese woman) and they talked. For several missionaries couldn’t understand what was going on and finally Beatrice took the phone and called her daughter and told her daughter that she wanted her to talk to the missionaries. Everyone talked together about the book of Mormon. The missionaries finished by giving a book of Mormon to the little girl Raphaela with the invitation to read it. It seemed to the missionaries that this was a good lesson and so they left with a prayer. At that moment there was someone else at the door. Elder Wilkey told Elder Underwood to turn around to see who was at the house.
He turned to see Maria (who was the daughter of Claudia, and the family was following behind. They had walked from their house because they didn’t have a car – just to come see this family. In talking to her Claudia said that she already knew this family because the two girls go to the same school and the missionaries were enchanted by the situation they found themselves in for several minutes. Unfortunately they had to leave. Because of this Elder Underwood asked Claudia to give a prayer and close in Portuguese so that Beatrice could understand.
Having offered the prayer, the missionaries said good bye to everyone and left. And passing by the house several minutes later they saw the two families had gone into the house so they could finish their conversation. The missionaries thank God for the miracle that they saw and went back to their house happy and humble.

The end.

Monday, July 18, 2016


Hello, I wrote this story in French for a sweet miracle that happened this week. I think you can google translate but idk if it will work very well. For my friends that speak French, excuse any errors but I don't think that there are many.

L'histoire de comment les missionnaires trouvèrent la famille Da Silva Barbosa.

Il était une fois...
    Le 21 avril 2016, Les missionnaires de Bastia (Elder Hansen, Elder Pesnell, Elder Underwood) attendaient un rendez-vous au côté est de l'étang de Biguglia mais ils reçurent un appel qui annula le rendez-vous. N'ayant pas fait un plan de remplacement, les missionnaires se repentirent et recherchèrent l'esprit du Seigneur pour savoir quelle décision il fallait qu'ils prissent. Elder Pesnell se tourna vers Elder Underwood en lui demandant la ville. Elder Underwood, ayant recherché l'esprit dit, "Borgo," et ensuite s'endormit dans la voiture. Les autres se moquèrent de lui en disant qu'il choisit une ville qui est loin de Bastia pour qu'il pût dormir pendant le voyage, pourtant l'esprit leur confirma qu'il fallait aller à Borgo. En arrivant à Borgo, les missionnaires, tous les trois avec une prière dans leurs cœurs, faisaient attention aux sentiments et aux pensées. Elder Pesnell et Elder Underwood, sachant que le Seigneur pourvoirait, écoutaient Elder Hansen qui commença à rechercher la révélation. Au premier rond-point, il dit, "tout droit," et encore pareil au deuxième et au troisième. Au seuil du quatrième, tout le monde se tut et Elder Hansen s'exclama, "Gauche!!" Ils prirent à gauche et garèrent la voiture.
    Ils commencèrent à faire du porte-à-porte. Personne ne répondit ni à la première ni à la deuxième porte. A la troisième, par contre, une jeune fille leur ouvrit la porte. Elder Underwood répondit instinctivement, "est-ce que tes parents sont là?" La jeune fille fuit immédiatement et Elder Underwood dit à ses collègues, "il faut qu'on baptise cette famille." Ensuite, un jeune homme jeta un coup d'œil aux missionnaires de derrière la porte. Les missionnaires dirent bonjour et le jeune homme fuit exactement comme sa sœur avait fait. Finalement, la mère vint à la porte tenant une petite fille dans ses bras. Les missionnaires commencèrent à lui parler de la famille et elle dit qu'elle connaissait l'Eglise. Elder Underwood, ayant supposé qu'elle ne connaissait pas l'Eglise parce que beaucoup de monde se trompe en pensant qu'ils connaissent l'Eglise, répondit d'un air soupçonneux. Elle lui répondit qu'elle connaissait l'Eglise parce qu'elle était membre de l'Eglise.
    Les missionnaires restèrent pantois pendant quelques secondes en pensant à comment cela pouvait être possible. Elle n'était pas sur la liste des membres de l'Eglise à Bastia. Elle expliqua qu'elle avait emménagé en Corse et n'était jamais venue à l'´Eglise. Ils fixèrent un rendez-vous ensemble et les missionnaires partirent. Dans la voiture ils étaient toujours surpris à cause du miracle qu'ils avaient vu ce jour là.
    Le temps passa et le miracle crût. Maintenant, la famille Da Silva Barbosa (y compris Claudia la mère, Maria la fille d'onze ans, Gabriel de six ans, et Hélèna de deux ans) vient à l'Eglise tous les dimanches et fortifie la branche de Bastia par leur foi.


L'histoire de comment les missionnaires de Bastia trouvèrent Béatrice

    La date était le 11 juillet 2016, presque trois mois après l'histoire précédente, et Elder Underwood était le seul missionnaire qui restait de l'équipe susmentionnée. Maintenant, il faisait de l'œuvre missionnaire avec Elder Wilkey et Elder Ramsey. En faisant la planification quotidienne, les missionnaires recherchèrent encore de l'inspiration. Auparavant, les missionnaires avaient fait beaucoup de travail à Borgo et avaient trouvé beaucoup de succès. Il semblait aux missionnaires que c'était peut-être le jour d'arrêter le travail à Borgo. Mais, en recherchant l'Esprit, ils reçurent l'inspiration de visiter un quartier spécifique. Sur la carte, il n'y avait pas beaucoup de maisons, mais ils savaient que c'était la volonté de Dieu qu'ils y allassent.
    Ils y allèrent et commencèrent à faire du porte-à-porte. Les missionnaires se rendirent compte rapidement que peu de personnes dans ce quartier voulaient parler avec eux. Ils discutèrent avec trois personnes qui ne voulaient ouïr parler ni de la famille ni de Dieu. La foi de Elder Underwood commença à devenir faible lorsqu'il approcha le portail de la dernière maison du quartier. Toutefois, il ouvrit le portail et les missionnaires franchirent la frontière de la propriété.
     À la porte, Elder Ramsey sonna une fois et personne n'ouvrit la porte. Alors, Elder Ramsey sonna encore. Pour Elder Underwood, cette tentative inutile avait sonné le glas de leur succès dans le quartier. Néanmoins, c'était possible qu'il y eût une autre porte, alors Elder Ramsey se déplaça pour pouvoir voir en bas de la maison. Il vit, ensuite, une dame, et instinctivement dit, "bonjour!"
     Elder Ramsey lui demanda s'il y avait deux portes pour ce bâtiment. Elle dit, "non, c'est la même chose." Ayant rompu la glace de cette conversation, Elder Ramsey parla un peu de la famille. Cette dernière se démena pour expliquer qu'elle ne parlait que la langue portugaise, et, à peine, un peu de français. Elder Ramsey lui demanda si elle parlait l'anglais. Elle répondit par la négative d'un air contrit, et monta les escaliers en continuant à parler. Les missionnaires essayaient de tout comprendre, mais ils ne comprirent que le fait qu'elle connaissait les mormons. Cela surprit les missionnaires parce qu'il n'y avait pas de personnes qui connaissaient les mormons dans ce quartier. Elle dit clairement qu'elle connaissait l'Eglise parce que ses parents étaient membres de l'Eglise au Portugal. Elder Underwood répondit avec enthousiasme, "est-ce que vous êtes membre de l'Eglise?" Elle répondit que ses parents étaient membres de l'Eglise à cause du fait qu'elle n'avait pas bien compris. Elder Underwood répondit définitivement, "et vous?" Cette fois ci, ayant bien compris, elle dit, "oui, je suis membre de la iglesia."
     Les Missionnaires étaient un peu plus habitués à cette phrase, par conséquent cela ne les laissât pas pantois. Par contre, les missionnaires demandèrent son nom et continuèrent à parler. Elder Underwood demanda à Elder Ramsey le portable et s'éloigna à quelques pas. Il appela Claudia pour lui dire qu'il y avait une portugaise qui était aussi membre de l'Eglise. Il donna le portable à Béatrice pour qu'elles parlassent ensemble. Pendant quelques minutes, les missionnaires comprenaient peu de choses. Béatrice, enfin, saisit le portable et appela sa fille en lui disant qu'il fallait rencontrer les missionnaires. Tout le monde parla ensemble au sujet de l' Eglise et du livre de mormon. Les missionnaires finirent par donner un livre de mormon à la fille, Raphaela, et par lancer l'invitation de le lire. Il semblait aux missionnaires que cela avait été une bonne leçon, alors ils allaient prier pour terminer. A ce moment là, à leur insu, quelqu'un arrivait au portail. Elder Wilkey toucha Elder Underwood en lui disant de se tourner pour pouvoir voir qui était devant la maison.
    Il se tourna et vit Maria, la fille de Claudia, avec la famille qui la suivait. Ils avaient marché depuis leur maison (à cause du fait qu'ils n'avaient pas de voiture) uniquement pour voir cette autre famille. En parlant, Claudia dit au missionnaires qu'elle connaissait déjà la famille et que les deux filles avaient assisté à l'école l'année précédente. Les missionnaires étaient enchantés par cette situation dans laquelle ils se trouvaient pendant quelques minutes, mais, malheureusement, ils se rendirent compte qu'ils devaient partir. À cause de cela, Elder Underwood demanda à Claudia de leur offrir une prière de clôture en portugais pour que Béatrice pût mieux comprendre.
    Ayant offert une prière, les missionnaires saluèrent tout le monde et partirent. En passant par la maison quelques minutes plus tard, ils virent que les deux familles étaient rentrées dans la maison pour pouvoir continuer leurs conversations sereinement. Les missionnaires remercièrent Dieu pour le miracle qu'ils avaient vu et rentrèrent à la maison heureux et humbles.

The end

The gist of the story is that we found another inactive member that didn't come to church because they didn't know it existed here! Also, while we were contacting, we had a member come up to us and ask where the church was because he didn't know it existed either! Crazy right? The picture that I sent was the lady that we found and then a member.

We had a really fun week because Ajaccio came up for a couple days. We taught a ton of lessons and had a blast.

On Friday me and my boys danced to a song from Hercules at Claudias house because the kids beat us in soccer and that was the deal. Took me back to men's drill days.

The other picture that I sent was of Jean luc Agnelot. He has been active now for a few weeks and he's our genealogy specialist. He's a rockstar. A couple months ago, he was inactive. Now, he's preparing to go to the temple to get sealed to his wife. Insane.

Well, love you tons.

Elder Marshall Underwood

Monday, July 11, 2016

Stars and Stripes Forever

My week started out with probably the best 4th of July ever. We met the Ajaccians down in bonafacio for our p day because we were going to do an exchange with them the next day. We started our day down there with a hamburger (that turned out to be a giant disgrace to both the 4th of July and the United States of America) and then we bounced to see the cliffs down there. We walked up a trillion stairs and some of us almost died. Then we walked around the city. Elder moss and I spent a lot of time trying to find Americans to wish them a happy 4th. This consisted of us walking around the city saying, quite loudly, things such as, "THE 4th OF JULY IS THE BEST HOLIDAY" and "stars and stripes forever." After that was over, we drove back to Ajaccio and started our work for the week.

On Tuesday, I had the chance to do some contacting with elders Thangaraj and moss. We taught 4 lessons then and 6 total that day. It was really a miracle. At the end of our session, I started to talk to this really tall guy and he looked at me really confused. His wife quickly noticed who we were and pulled her away. As he walked away, he showed me that he had a restoration of the church pamphlet. So, naturally, I just assumed that he had talked to elder moss because he was a little up the street. BUT, none of the missionaries in Ajaccio had talked to this guy. It is a mystery that literally caused me to lose some sleep this week.

On Wednesday I did a district meeting and it was pretty good. Nothing interesting to be mentioned here. Then we drove back to Bastia and I out my head outside the car for a lot of the ride just to take it in.

On Thursday we went to teach our investigator in murato. He's really a great guy and we are just trying to decide his baptismal date right now!

We taught the da silva barbosa family again. Their family has
literally made a 180 degree turn and it is incredible. The little girl should be baptized in a while. Probably when her dad gets back home. But I just hope that I will be here for it.

On Saturday this guy let us in and we talked for a long time. He was surprised that we don't drink or look at porn and stuff like that and it was basically him trying to sell us his way of life. Obviously we refused but then I saw a malicious look come into his eyes and he ran inside. We all grabbed our bags immediately and elder Ramsey stood up. As expected, he came out with a couple porn magazines. I almost laughed so hard because I expected that he was going to do that, but I couldn't believe it. Anyway, we left quickly, needless to say.

Sunday went pretty well. We actually got a referral from the United States (which is awesome). We went to visit this guy and he is really cool and smart! The probable is that he works a lot but we will start teaching him.

Anyway, love you tons,
Elder Marshall Underwood

 Disappointing hamburger