Sunday, February 26, 2017


I've had quite an edifying week this week.

The beginning of the week 6 is always at presidents house. All of the missionaries come in for presidents p day. For me, this meant playing basketball for a few hours. Elder Wade is giving me some pretty good tips so you better watch out. 

Monday evening, tuesday, and a part of Wednesday were spent discerning the transfers that needed to take place. It is so amazing to be behind the scenes and watch as Gods hand directs the missionaries. For many, i will never know the reasons why they were transferred (and it's their personally responsibility to figure it out) but I will always be grateful for the testimony that I have of he reality of God's love and care for us. 

We visited the family of Cello and Mona, who are friends of the Zinn's. They really love the missionaries and church and they will definitely be baptized. 

My birthday went really well. I'm really grateful for my companions who made it a special day. I love being able to spend my birthday serving others.

One thing that I learned this week comes from the sacrament prayer:

O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this bread to the souls of all those who partake of it, that they may eat in remembrance of the body of thy Son, and witness unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they are willing to take upon them the name of thy Son, and always remember him and keep his commandments which he has given them; that they may always have his Spirit to be with them. Amen.

These two bolded words, "are willing," comprise one French word and define a part of God's character. If these words were taken out and the prayer was read that way, all hope would be lost, because the ordinance would require immediate and unfailing perfection. However, because His grace is sufficient, we can be perfected little by little. God does not require us to be perfect, but he does require that we be willing and striving to attain perfection. 

Elder Marshall Underwood

Sunday, February 19, 2017

He has his ear plugs in

Dear mom,

Sorry to just send my journal but you liked it last week!

13 février 2017
     The Montpellier conference went well. It was the first one at which I had to translate and It was fun just to talk to sister Hoquin. Elder Nelson did an impressive job for his first time. 

14 février 2017
     President brought a rose for all of the sisters in the conference and it was so cute. I hope that I will be able to become the most like president that I can. I know that we are supposed to become Christlike but president is as close to Christ that I have seen. 
     We took a scarf and chocolate to sister Kemp and helped her figure out something on her computer. We then took yellow flowers to sister brown and she exclaimed, "how do I not hug you?!" Afterwards, we took flowers to sister Barachant. It was a little sad to see her alone. She invited us in and we had zero time but we went in and sat down. 
     In the evening, we were late to a mangez-vous chez l'évêque and it was so fun! We just shared mission stories and Lea Pommier was so cute about it. She is 16 and already thinking about her mission. 

15 février 2017
     In the morning, Elder Wade and I worked out together for about 8 minutes at the end of the workout. We did what was later called 'gut check.' One of us would sprint a lap while the other was planking.
     Today was just a long drive to Bordeaux (aka sit in the car and eat candy). Unfortunately, the road didn't pass by Perigueux. I really wanted to stop but we didn't have time. We went to Flunch along he way and I got some good duck! I learned that the way that the French will cook meat is either blue, bleeding, just right, or well done. Well done is the only one that is cooked all the way through.
     When talking about elder Golightly: me to sister Roldan: he's kinda like me. Sister Brown: perfect? How kind of her to say that. 

16 février 2017
     The best thing about the Bordeaux conference was that they blew up a giant grey exercise ball and put a bunch of tools on it and called it the stone cut out of the mountain without hands. This was in order to signify how we can keep the church rolling forward with all of the tools that we have been given! How clever!  

17 février 2017
     President, in the car, said that he was reading a note from Elder Sumter and he said that he was "very impressed with elder Underwood's example of leadership and following the spirit." Quote from president and not exactly elder Sumter. I said that was very nice of him and president said, "he's right on."
     "My body is screaming, "mangos please!" -President Brown 

Elder Marshall Underwood 

Monday, February 13, 2017

Gulliver's Travels

4 février 2017
     This morning I got to President's house early to take his family to Geneva. The ride was pretty quiet but I loved interacting with Londyn and Britain and Rowen again. Their parents, Carly and Zachary, are so great and I Love them. It was a little sad to see Sister Brown say goodbye to them but I was with them, so it was okay. 
     We then took Elder Pesnell and Elder Hall to lunch at a Mexican restaurant in Balexert. I got fajitas and it was really good. I went with the zone leaders afterward and we went to do service at Sister Torres's house. Only her husband Manu was there but we helped out a lot.
     On buses, I was having such a good time contacting. I would just sit down next to someone and ask if they were from Geneva and then talk about how much I love Geneva. We went and played foot (soccer) and it was a blast! I saw Cornetas and Julian and they were happy to see me! I megged Samuel and Joao and everyone went crazy. 
    In the evening, we saw Ali. He cancelled the RDV with the elders but then told them to come over when he heard I was there. He's so great. He's still struggling but I pray that he will progress. 
     On the bus home, I met a girl named Miriam. She asked why I was a missionary (implying that I could be doing other things like school) and i said, "it's a little hard to explain. Actually, it's not hard. Forget that I said that." I then went on to bear my testimony of God and she was touched. I don't know why she refused to exchange numbers or even to take the elders number. I don't know. I was really sad about it for a while. 
     I cut elder Caramelli's hair.

5 février 2017
     This Sunday, I was lucky enough to go to the Spanish, English, and French wards! In the Spanish Ward, I sat next to Camille, the cute little girl whose family came from Mexico but her mother is French. We spent our time passing notes to each other. In the English Ward, I sat on the stand with President and Sister Brown. In the French Ward, I got to see a lot of people that I knew and I passed the sacrament.
     The rest of the day was interviews. I went out for a few hours in the night with Elder Hall and Elder Wall. I think that Elder Wall is struggling to talk with people because he doesn't really speak French well. I hope that he will get over that. 

6 février 2017
     Today was Geneva conference and it went really well! I ripped my pants really bad. Those grey suit pants lasted me a long time!
     After the conference, we gave a blessing to Elder Pesnell. In the blessing, I said that his past companions would be eternally grateful for what he has done for them. Later, I let him know that one of those companions was me.

7 février 2017
     Lausanne is a beautiful city and I found the best deodorant that I have ever had! The zone leaders, Elder Wilkey and Elder Sumter did a beautiful job with their presentation and they even had a "France Lyon Mission Toolbox." Elder Pistole made a big meaty cheesy lasagna that was even better with Sister Austins! Sister Bonnamy in Lausanne cracked me up. I saw her cooking and I said, in French, "I didn't know that you cook!" She replied, "well, now you know." Later, I ate one of her brownies and I told her thank you. Then she said, "maintenant, vous n'avez qu'à faire la vaisselle." (Now you just have to do the dishes). I liked her sass.
     We went to dinner with the Dan and Maurine Egan at Entrecôte. She was really worried and vented about her inquietudes (concerns). We went to their apartment and gave her a blessing and it was beautiful. I slept at the office elders apartment. 

8 février 2017
     I went to the Lyon conference and Sister Soffe and Sister Lowder were on fire!
     After getting home to Ecully, I had to go pick up the Toulouse Zone leaders at the airport. Elder Hekking and Elder Hurst are so beaux.

9 février 2017
     To start the day, I played Sister Brown in ping pong while we waited for President to pack. In the car, I fell asleep under a cloudy sky and woke up 20 Minutes later in the sunny south. What a breath of fresh air! We stopped in Nîmes and took elders Brook and Owen to Subway. Sister Brown even got a free refill! Elder Brook is from Pocatello.
     In the car, President talked about my friends. I talked about a couple people, but ,after a while, I stopped talking. A few minutes later, President said, "you got pretty quiet after talking about this girl." I said, "I could tell you all of my thoughts about my girl situation." And Sister Brown interjected, "but he's not thinking about it!" What a baller :)
     We drove into Nice and my jaw dropped. It was stunningly beautiful! We went to the church and I played basketball with Elder Jarrod Sweet (I really like him). I was draining everything too!
     In the evening, we went to the AC Marriott in Nice and I had the best dinner I have ever had. It was a square puffed pastry filled with chicken, mushroom sauce, and tomatoes. How beautiful. I was so grateful for that. I pillow talked with Elder Hoopes and Elder Sweet. 

10 février 2017
     Elder Sweet and I woke up and ran to the beach to skip rocks. It was such a beautiful morning and I sweat like a monster. 
     The conference went really well. Elder Thorley and Elder Wiberg did a beautiful job and it was all lead by the spirit. Donna made an amazing lunch and the best crepes that I have ever had. 
     In the car on the way to Toulon, I realized that I had forgotten my suitcase. I felt really bad but the Bastia elders went back to get it. Elder Thorne and I met them at the Port and I got it back. While walking with it in the city, there was a man with a really weird eye that I looked at. This caused him to come up behind me and yell at me. I stood there facing the other direction, thinking, "this is it. This is the story that spreads around the mission of the assistant getting clocked in the back of the head." He didn't do it but I told elder Thorne that I was waiting for it to happen when we walked away and he said, "me too."

11 février 2017
     Elder Thorne about killed me running up a gigantic hill in Toulon. I finished it and it was a good view but I am going to be sore. Other than that, the Toulon Conference went really well and the Zone leaders did some very creative things!
     That afternoon, we went to steak and shake and I got a delicious speculoos shake! I never thought I would find a good milkshake in France but I stand corrected.
     The drive to Montpellier had a lot of pay stations. 

12 février 2017
     The Montpellier chapel was full for a beautiful sacrament meeting. Elder Oborn gave a talk and really the whole meeting was great! 
    We taught one of their amis and she was talking about how she wanted to make a donation to the church. She really wanted us to explain to her whether it would be possible and how it works. She said that she wanted to be liberated if something and that is why she was doing it. She got up to get us water and we went right into repentance. At the end of what the lesson, she committed to repent and that was really what she needed. What a great experience!
     I learned today that one of the reasons why talking with people in their mid-teens to their mid-twenties is so effective is that they realize how spectacular it is for young people to serve missions! They just get it. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2017


This week I was blessed with a few things:

I was able to go on exchange with Elder Nelson. He lives in Montpellier and is a really young zone leader. However, he has no fear. I was so happy to be with him!

We went to meet some of the Brown family that was visiting France. Being with them was amazing and it felt like they were my own family. We taught the kids something, and afterwards, President Brown said that we were as angels ministering to his grandchildren. What a compliment. 

On Sunday, I was in Geneva with President and Sister Brown. I got to see members from the Spanish, English, and French wards that I had known and love. 

What a week:)

Elder Marshall Underwood

Monday, February 6, 2017

On tour with President Brown

Hey, I am on tour with President and Sister Brown. I'll send emails off sometime. :)

Elder Marshall Underwood