Saturday, March 28, 2015


March 28, 2015

Dear Mom,

Today I'll have to write a short email because today we went to a "gruda." That’s Portuguese for a cave. President and Sister Fortunato took us on a staff p-day trip to "A Gruda do Maquiné"! It was awesome. It’s absolutely enormous inside and then afterwards we went and ate some really good bbq!

This week was a good one! We worked like crazy and found some really cool new investigators! One is from Rio and moved here last week. He is a roommate with a returned missionary so things are going very well.

Sorry I have such little time to write!

I love you!

The trip sounds like its going great.

Elder Marsh

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Stake Conference

Dear Mom,

Mason looks like he had a great time at prom and that’s a killer pr! Tell him good job. Also...Anna is going to High School already??

Elder Eaton should leave on the 30th but goes to São Paulo first and then will get here on the 8th of Abril I think. If you would like to send him with a big jar of peanut butter for me here, that would be welcome! haha. Only if he has space in his bag though.

This week was another good one. We had a training meeting with all of the district leaders in the mission. President and Sister Fortunato talked about the importance of being a leader. They said that a leader needs two things: To know how to discern and be consecrated. Elder Stephen L Richards said this about discernment

"The highest type of discernment is that which perceives in others and uncovers for them their better natures, the good inherent within them. It’s the gift every missionary needs when he takes the gospel to the people of the world. He must make an appraisal of every personality whom he meets. He must be able to discern the hidden spark that may be lighted for truth. The gift of discernment will save him from mistakes and embarrassment, and it will never fail to inspire confidence in the one who is rightly appraised."

Cool stuff. I'm working to develop this more.

Elder Juergens and I gave a training on finding for new investigators. Preach My Gospel says that nothing happens in missionary work until we find someone to teach!
Baptism of Robson with Elder Marsh and Elder Juergens
I compared finding new investigators to pearl divers. Back in the day, they would dive down deep into the waters (sometimes 100 feet) on one breath of air looking for pearls. The problem is that they couldn’t know which oysters would have pearls in them until they were opened.  When they dove down, they would grab as many oysters as they could and then surface with them to see which would be holding the valuable pearls (a very low percentage of oysters have pearls naturally). I said that every dive is like a week in the mission, every oyster is a new investigator, and every pearl is a baptism. In a week we can surface after finding only one new investigator, but it won’t be likely that we will find a pearl, or in other word, have a baptism.  If we want to increase the number of baptisms, we first have to increase the number of new investigators that we find! The truth is that we don’t know which new investigators are the elect of God until they have decided to follow the gospel and be baptized in his church.  "For mine elect hear my voice and harden not their hearts."-D&C 29:7
Robson was baptized last week! It was awesome and he is just ecstatic with the decision that he made! We are hoping to help another young man to be baptized this weekend too! We'll just have to see what miracles are about to happen!

I love you so much,
Elder Marsh 

PS   7 people were baptized this past weekend after stake conference!

We got a new stake president.  He is the brother of our old Stake President haha.

Baptism of 7 after Stake Conference

Elder Mazagartti of the 70 came and said some powerful things. He said that chastity, exaltation, and glory are the same word

Saturday, March 14, 2015


Dear Mom, 

First of all, I really liked the pictures of the weekend for dad’s birthday. Our family is so awesome. Also, congratulate Mason and Chris for their smarts and Anna for her personality!

We had another killer week. I love the mission! 

Elder Horton and I
Last Sunday we celebrated Ailton's(recent convert) birthday with a Brasilian bbq and cake!  He is so awesome and committed to the gospel.  He is coming to church every week in a suit and tie and has changed a lot since the first day that we met him. Brasilian bbq's are different than American. They just get a lot of steaks and other meats, dip it in rock salt, and then grill it up over a wood fire. It’s delicious, and we get to eat like kings.  

We got a new Elder in the office! Elder Horton is now being trained to be the next financial secretary when Elder Bunch goes back to the field. He's from Lehi, Utah and way cool. I took a picture with him really quickly so that you could see him.

Also, we have an incredible investigator named Robson that we have been teaching since last week! He lives in some crazy circumstances. When he was a kid he grew up in an orphanage, and a nice Dutch lady took care of him because his actual parents couldn't. When he turned 18, he couldn’t stay there anymore and had to go back to his house, which is full of really awful influences. He has been there for 7 years now and had fallen into the temptations a few times. Since we have started teaching him he has left everything behind. He said that he felt like he was home at church and could actually feel the love of the members, which is difficult for him to feel at his house. He's reading the Book of Mormon diligently every day and has already finished 1 Nephi and all of our teaching pamphlets! Tomorrow we have stake conference and he'll be baptized after the meetings!

Good news too: They found Cristian! He's safe and sound.

This week I went on splits with Elder Lutz, my MTC companion, in Divinópolis! That was awesome. It’s a lot more fun teaching people now that we speak some Portuguese.

I love you,

Elder Marsh

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Picture of Winston

First of all, Happy Birthday Dad!

Baptism of Winston
I think I should tell you the end of the story of Winston. So, we actually got to meet him personally on Saturday night.  We met up with him in the church a couple hours before his baptism to make sure that everything was just good to go.  He is a businessman who travels a lot and lives in many cities depending on the time of year. His house is here in BH but he has another home near Espirito Santo, which is about 9 hours away where he usually goes to church when he isn’t here or travelling. His wife is a member for 13 years, and he had been investigating the church for that whole time. Look how crazy this miracle is: He had received all of the institute manuals from the church and decided that he would be baptized after reading all of them (those books are huge and that would take like 5 more years), but then someone told him, "If you get baptized, you'll receive the gift of the Holy Ghost and you'll understand those books better." That's when he called our bishop and asked if he could be baptized HERE in BH. Why? He didn’t really know why he felt he wanted to be baptized here, but he traveled 9 hours from where he was and was baptized and confirmed and then gave us a hug, thanked us, and went back to where he came from. It was like a dream come true.

Sunday was another miracle. We had 7 investigators at church! One is an awesome family who is so excited about the gospel and love the problem though.  Their 13 year old son who went to church too has been missing since Tuesday.  Obviously, they are very worried about the situation. Please pray for Christian to come home soon. 

On Wednesday we had the leadership counsel meeting.  I gave a training on how to do splits with other missionaries. I compared the leaders to lifeguards. One of their responsibilities is to watch the missionaries that they take care of and if they show signs of trouble or start to struggle, the leader has to dive in and rescue that missionary and their area before they go all the way under. But to be a lifeguard, you have to know swim first!

I love you guys,

Elder Marsh