Wednesday, January 29, 2014


Oí family and friends!! So this week has been pretty good! Nothing too exciting. It wasnt too exciting haha. Portuguese is coming along, slowly but its improving!! The standouts for me were 2 devotionals we had. One was on Sunday. We got a new MTC president last week, his name is President Swensen and he is really funny.
Anyways, on Sunday he talked about the mission age change in October of 2012. The mission age changed for elders from 19 to 18. And for sisters it went from 21 to 19. He said 10 years ago he got a phone call to make a plan to change the age to be able to serve. He presented it and the Quorum of the 12 said it was good, but not now. Then 18 months after that, it happened again. Same thing, they said it was good, but not now. Then in 2011, they asked him again to do the same thing. He said he presented to plan and they said it wasnt good, but it was time. So after the next couple months, he worked with a couple Members of the 12 to change the age. They worked for months to make it perfect before presenting it to all of the Quorum of the 12. All the members of the Quorum of the 12 liked it and wanted to preside it to first presidency. They presented the plan to the first presidency, and President Monson said ´´What about the Sisters??´´ President Swensen said the plan was only to change the age of elders!! I had no idea. So the age change of Sisters was President Monson´s idea. Holy cow, how great is that?? President Swensen got sit front row of the Oct 2012 general conference when President Monson annouced the change. Only the 1st presidency, Qourum of the 12, and a select few of the 70 knew about the change. He said when President Monson annouced the Elders change their was a few quite whispers but when President Monson annouced the Sisters age change, is was going crazy. Every one had their phone out texting each other about the age change! He said bishops all over the world were getting texts to see if they could give interviews between the 2 sessions! That talk was awesome. Then he went on to say, we have 83,000 missionaries out in the world right now!! The Lord´s work is going forward, and there is evidence from that!! He then went to say, 2 days after the mission age change, the mexico area called the church to tell them that the church owned a high school and they could turn it into a MTC. So 6 months after that, the Mexico MTC was finished. From a high school to MTC. Its pretty crazy! Then the church had to open 58 new missions. holy cow.
Then we had one yesterday. Elder Costa was suppose to come but couldnt make it. So we watched a devotional from 2011. Elder Holland spoke so it was awesome. He talked about how missionaries need to convert themselves before converting other people. I love this gospel and im so glad im here! But i know i still have a lot of learning to do. Then he talked about the Apostle Peter. Before Christ died, he had only been an apostle for at max 36 months. Then when Christ died, we know that the new prophet was the Apostle who has been an apostle the longest, just like today. And that was Peter. So Peter was in charge of the church after christ died. He didnt really know what to do. So he went to go back to what he knows how to do, Fishing. After a long night and morning of not catching anything, the apostles saw a man on the beach making a fire. Then the man said cast your nets back into the water, and they did and they couldnt even pull the net back out!! Then John told Peter, ´´its him.´´ The apostles went back to the beach. And Cristo asked Peter, ´´do you love me?´´ peter said yes. Then Christ asked again, Peter said yes. Then Christ asked a 3rd time, ´´Peter, do you love me?´´ Peter looked at him and said ´´Yes, i love you. I would do anything for you.´´ Christ then said well then go out and preach my word! Being a missionary and apostle is every moment of the day. His message was about missionaries going home and continuing to do whats right even when they are off their missions. It was a really strong message.
We got a sister yesterday from the Provo MTC. Her name is sister Marsezzella or something like that. its close to Marstella so i thought that was pretty funny.
Anyways I love all of you and i keep you in my prayers daily!!
Elder Marstella  

Thursday, January 23, 2014


 Hey friends and family!! so this week went by a lot faster than the first week. This week Portuguese is coming along a lot better. But i still have a lot of learning still to do. This week we got a new CTM president. President and Sister Degn´s time is up. They have been awesome these last two weeks, ill miss them for sure. But the new CTM president is Presidente Swenson. He gave a talk last night and was super funny. He´ll be awesome. Also this week, the Brazilians that came in the same day as my American district left Monday. I had 2 Brazilian roommates and one was fluent in English and the other one didn't speak any English. Anyways, Elder Assis, the one who spoke English is an amazing guy. He is a convert of 2 years and has an amazing testimony. I took alot of pictures with the Brazilians that left and ill be sure to send them when i get to Cuiaba.

Every pday we get to go out around the CTM and shop and stuff so that's pretty cool. Last week i got a Brazilian soccer Jersey. Pdays are awesome, mostly because i get to email home!! Portuguese is tough. We literally wake up, study for an hour, breakfast, study for another hour and a half, exercise, lunch, 3 hours of class, dinner, then 4 more hours of class. It is literally the hardest part of the CTM for sure, but it will all be worth it. On Sunday, we got to watch 17 miracles, needless to say that I cried pretty much the whole time haha. Did you guys so Saratov Approach yet?? if not, you need to go see it! its amazing and i saw it before i left! Thank you guys so much for the support and love! i appreciate it so much.
My comp and i teach 2 lessons everyday to fake investigators and I'm using my notes less and less, its awesome haha.
My district is awesome. we get along so well and we are always laughing, which is sometimes a bad thing. But i love each one of them already. I love it here and wouldn't rather be anywhere else right now in my life. I love it i love it i love it.
Eu sei que Jesus Cristo e meu Salvador. Eu amor vocês. Eu amor minha mai.

I love Brazil and i love the people here. Thank you guys!! Ill talk to yall next week!

Elder Marstella

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Looks like Mason will be emailing on Wednesdays! 

Here is Elder Marstella's email from this morning!

So this week has been crazy to say the least. Starting with the plane rides over to Brazil. From Dallas to Miami i sat in the middle of the 3 seat side. I was like come one!! I landed in Miami and was able to call my mom to tell her i landed safely. Then from Miami i was just hoping not to sit in the exact middle. and guess what... I sat in the middle of the middle row. I was in between 2 Brazilians on each side. And none of the spoke English so that definitely was hard haha. The plane ride was about 8 hours. It was the toughest thing ever. lol well anyways i landed and went through customs and got my bags and met up with some other missionaries, then we drove to the CTM.
So this week has seemed like its been a month. Not even kidding. Every day we have to be doing something. And its either learning Portuguese, eating, or sleeping. But our teacher keeps saying dos das linguas. Which means 'gift of tounges'. I can definitely tell the lord is working that on me. I have been here a week and I can bare my testimony in Portuguese and also say my prayer in Portuguese. Its awesome but there is a lot of things still to learn.
So in my district, there is Sister Forsyth, Sister Stout, Sister Craig, Elder Gardner, Elder Coombs, Elder Smittennaar (my companion), and me. and guess what, on Sunday I was called to the district Leader!! Woohoo haha its been such a long weeek. So my companion is from Maryland and is 18.  So its been fun here. Ohh and in my room there are 6 of us, we have 2 more Brazilian roommates. One of them speaks English, and the other one we are teaching English. They are seriously the best. Elder Assis helps us a lot in Portuguese. The first couple days were the hardest. I have to admit i was a little homesick and i missed my mom. But the next couple days when i lost myself in the work, I wasn't homesick anymore. After the 2nd day we weren't allowed to talk in English anymore so that was tough. But it helps us think in Portuguese. Well my time is running down, so i love all of you!! Y'all are amazing. I miss y'all but I'd rather be here serving the Lord. Brazil is awesome and i cant wait to here from y'all next week!! Thank you! Tchau!
Elder Marstella 

***Remember, Mason is only able to email once a week, and isn't able to make ANY phone calls. So letters and emails are very important to him, since it is his only connection to home. So, if you have spare time, send him an email or letter! The addresses are off to the right of this post! :)

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Mason's first Email! 

And the adventure begins! 

Mason left last night (1/7) at 6:30pm and flew to Miami. His flight took off from Miami at 11:45pm and he landed at 11:00am Brazil time this morning ! He is in São Paulo at the Brazil MTC and he is 4 hours ahead of Dallas! 

Mom!!!! I made it to Brazil! I love it! It seems like ive been at the CTM for forever!!! We only have 10 minutes to email today, so i just wanted to let you know i made it safe!! I love you and im not sure when my p-day is. Its 730 right now. I love you so much!!!! Portuguese is coming along, most of our classes are only in Portugues, so that helps. I need to shower though, its been like 2 days since ive showered. haha but its hot down here and I think of you and the fam alot! But i know this is where i need to be! I have taken some pictures but im not sure how to upload them lol. Ill email you this next upcoming pday. Tell everyone to write me!
Oh and i got my name tag and i love it!!! This keyboard is so weird haha i dont know how to make a question mark. I LOVE YOU AND IM SAFE.
                            Elder Marstella 

So, Mason is safe! See the right column of the blog to see his address and email address! Take a minute and send him a letter or email! He would love it!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Elder Marstella

Hi all- 

This is Mason's older sister, Haley. As you all know, Mason will be serving a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in the Cuiaba Brazil mission for the next 2 years! Mason will be emailing home once a week. I will be posting his weekly letters here for those of you who would like to keep track of how he is doing in Brazil. 

His direct blog link is He leaves this tuesday, January 7th to head to the Brazil Missionary Training Center where he will be training for the next 6 weeks. I've posted his addresses to the right.

Any comments left here will be forwarded onto Elder Marstella! Thank you all for your love and support for my little brother! I'm so excited for him!