Monday, October 31, 2016

Perfect Love Casteth Out All Fear

This week was a wonderful week for me to learn. We have talked before about the bus situation here in Geneva, because it's actually illegal, and I have encouraged the missionaries in Geneva to talk to people anyway and wait for those questions to come. However, when I got onto the bus on Tuesday morning, I found myself hesitant and reluctant to talk to anyone. I didn't understand why. I felt really hypocritical for a while before I realized that I have never really taken buses on my mission. This was my moment to learn!

Two things helped me:
1. What if love were out only motivation? This question was burned into my soul and I lost myself in the possibilities of it. I got so excited to love people! I always told myself that when I finish my mission, I will be so kind and loving, but I wasn't doing anything to improve that attribute.

2. Don't overcome your fears, just leave them behind. This is what the spirit told me when I was walking to the bus one morning this week. I was thinking about how I needed to over come the fear of what people would think of me on the bus and go to work. I often think of overcoming fears as a long, uphill battle. However, the spirit helped me realize that it would be much easier if I forgot that I had any fear. So, I figuratively took the fear out of myself and imagined myself placing the burden on the sidewalk next to me. The spirit just brought to my memory that "perfect love casteth out all fear." These two things are actually connected. I wouldn't have been able to cast out the fear if I didn't decide that I wanted to love people, no matter who they were or what they would think of me.

The rest of the week went really well on the buses. Not everyone wants to have a gospel conversation but I always seem to be able to tell them who I am and what I'm doing. I will get better. I really try to talk to everyone because I don't really care if someone thinks I'm weird. For example, one day, we talked to about 20 people from 16 different countries! Egypt, Kenya, Russia, Portugal, Zimbabwe, Togo, Poland, China, Bahamas, Greece, France, Switzerland, Colombia, Brazil, Afghanistan, England. Wow! I love Geneva. I hope I will stay here for a long time.

We lost a couple engages this week, but don't worry, we will find some more!

I love you,

Elder Marshall Underwood

Halloween Costume - A Missionary

Monday, October 24, 2016

Double Whammy

I met two people this week that I really appreciated.

The first one was a referral that we got a couple weeks ago with whom we had set a meeting for this week. We went to his house and he warmly invited us in. As we began talking, he expressed to us that he had read the Book of Mormon, asked us for the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price, told us that he loves the gospel library app, took a Book of Mormon for his daughter... As you can guess, we were pretty shocked. He already knew the role of Joseph Smith so we did not spend any time there. We went straight to the gospel of Jesus Christ because he asked us if we could teach him how to repent. He has some worries that will keep him from baptism for a while, but it is his goal and we hope to help him.

The next one was a man that we met a couple weeks ago too. We were in the park and we know that we were there to see a miracle. We met the people that we thought were our miracle. It turns out that they weren't and so we walked away. Elder Kelsey asked, "where should we go?" I looked around and said, "there it is." We walked swiftly to a couple and started talking to them. The man was very kind and his job is to teach people how to be compassionate. I asked him when we could see him again and he said, "that's tempting." I said, "I know, so when can we see each other again." He didn't know his schedule too well so we took his number.

Fast forward to this week.

We called him up and set a meeting for Saturday. It was about ten minutes past the time and so I thought that he wasn't going to come. However, at that moment, he walked around the corner and apologized for being late. After a quick tour of the chapel, we looked for a room and sat down together. He is a very smart man that studied to be a catholic priest. We asked why he didn't become one and he explained that it was because he knew that the bible was compiled by men, many things have been changed and the religion didn't follow what's written in the bible. I told him that he was exactly right and then elder Kelsey and I presented the message of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. After we described the authority that Jesus had, he said, "oh, so the restoration means that it's a return to the purity of the doctrine taught by Jesus Christ. It was incredible to see how much sense that it made in his head. We finished the message and he sat quietly. I could tell that he was thinking. He then explained, "I'm trying to decide my next step. Is it to read the Book of Mormon? Is that what you would counsel me?" We of course said yes and asked him, as he receives a testimony of the book, if he would be baptized. He understood the progression and agreed to pray right there. He went on to offer possibly the most sincere prayer I have ever heard. After we said amen, I told him that it was one of the most sincere prayers I have ever heard and he broke into tears.

I don't really understand what happened on these two occasions but I know that God just stepped into the lives of two men, and I was there to witness it.

Elder Marshall Underwood

Monday, October 17, 2016


I don't remember what I did this week. I'm so scrambled because the Garcias got baptised. I taught them almost everything with Elder Berry in my first area. I'm just so happy!

I did get to go on an exchange with Elder Ramsey. It was fun because we used to be companions and we got to work together again.

That's basically everything important.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the church that Jesus established upon the earth. It was lost, but the good news is that it came back!

Elder Marshall Underwood

Monday, October 10, 2016


This week was a good one. It started out with us having to go get some more mattresses and sheets at ikea in preparation for a bunch of elders to sleep at our house. We put everything into the cart and were walking towards the register when we looks at our boring white sheets and stopped. IKEA is a beautiful place full of selection. Long story short, we tossed those ugly sheets and bought every color of the rainbow.

We got to teach Isis again. She is great. We went over the plan of salvation in the park. We used leaved and helicopter seeds to draw it out on the pavement and it made a lot of sense to her. I hope that next time that we invite her to be baptised, she will say yes. But, for this week, she told me that she would read first nephi!

On Thursday, we got to go to Lyon for a conference. I love those because I get to see a lot of people, but I usually just end up chatting with elder Pesnell during lunch. The conference was great and we got to announce that the area book app on the iPad will be used now. I got to use it in Philly and it's really a blessing. At the conference, we played human hungry hungry hippos and Geneva zone won, of course. That night, we got to present to the high council. I always love doing that because it helps a lot to be connected with the entire stake in our efforts.

On Friday we went to a members home and he was writing in a Book of Mormon. He said that his son had a tutor over that was studying religions and that he might as well show him the true one. So, he handed that to him when he came out and the tutor was very grateful. Hopefully he'll give it a read.

On Saturday there was a talent show. Me and elder Kelsey and the sisters sang. It was pretty good.

On Sunday we got invited to dinner at one of the English members homes. It was really weird because they are from Texas. It was quite bizarre to walk into an American home and eat some American food and talk with Americans. I know that most of my companions are Americans, but it's different when it's an entire family.

Anyway, great week. I'm so happy to be here in Geneva, inviting everyone to learn of Christ.

I would like to give a shoutout to the relief society from the union park 3rd ward for the taco seasoning. It was greatly needed.

Elder Marshall Underwood

Friday, October 7, 2016

Elder Grant Keller visits France / Geneva

Grant Keller (Elder Keller) returned to visit France with his family. They went to lunch with Elder Underwood and Elder Kelsey. These pictures were texted to mom today.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Birthday Party Invitation

This week was a great week. Me and my companion planned on seeing a miracle every day. And this is what happened:

Monday: taught 5 lessons on a pday, including a miracle less-active find in the park!

Tuesday: we invited two people to baptism. One of them said yes and the other one said he would pray about the date that we mentioned.

Wednesday: I was poorly describing the apostasy and our Ami said, "they didn't have the keys (of the kingdom):" an amazing example of how God can enlighten the minds of his children. We invited her to be baptized, however, she declined. We will invite her again next week.

Thursday: the Ami that we invited to be baptized on Tuesday accepted his date after prayer and meditation.

Friday: gave a less active a blessing and her heart was softened and she committed to come to church.

Saturday: another baptismal invitation, and another commitment to prepare for a specific date accepted!

Sunday: if hearing the voice of the prophet of God was not enough of a miracle, here's a big one for you: we were talking to a lady in the park and she started telling us of her pains and afflictions. We testified of the power of the atonement and my companion offered her a blessing. I was, at first, taken aback. However, I thought of the savior and what he would do in our situation, and subsequently started a blessing. A rustling park was immediately calmed as my companion announced upon this woman the words of her father in heaven. It was truly a beautiful experience. We hope that she will listen to the counsel she was given and progress in the gospel.

I was also very grateful for the chance at I had to watch conference. My only thought about conference is this: those men are not just the leaders of the church, but the leaders of the world. To listen to their inspired counsel is to listen to the voice of the lord. I know that I received answers to my questions and I know that God wants to speak to his children. All we have to do is be humble enough to listen and follow.

Elder Marshall Underwood