May 2011-May 2013

Kevin has been called to serve as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He has been assigned to labor in the Brazil Londrina Mission for two years and will be teaching the gospel in the Portuguese language. Kevin will not be using the internet while serving as a missionary. This site will be updated by me, his mom, as I recieve his weekly email letters and pictures. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Average Day

Editor's note: Because Kevin only gets 30 minutes to email on pdays his letters have been short. He  spends time reading the long ones we send him.  So this week my letter to him was only one paragraph (we did mail him letters too).  Then I asked him to answer these questions that we came up with at FHE: 

1.     What scripture would you like on your Missionary plaque?

2.     What is Brazilian food like? What are the recipes?

3.     What is your typical day like at the CTM?

Wed 5/25/2011 10:26 AM

Haha. I guess since I don’t have anything to read I’m going to have to spend the whole 30 minutes writing. So here I go I guess.

I don’t know what scripture I want on my missionary plaque. For now it can be Isaiah 41:9-10 or maybe Philippians 4:13 or maybe that one scripture in 2 Nephi that dad shared on the day I left. They are all really awesome.

The food here is 50% arroz e feijão (rice and beans) and 50% salad and meat. Pretty good stuff, I love it. . .  except that the classroom smells really awful after meals. 

The average day is wake up at 6:30 shower and dress for personal study at 7, breakfast at 8, class at 8:30 until lunch at 1. Class again from 2 until dinner at 5:30. Gym from 6:30 to 7:30. Take another shower and change for companion study at 8 and daily planning at 9 till snack time at 9:30. Lights out at 10:30. Pretty exciting, huh?  In class we spend time learning the language and the lessons in preach my gospel and how to be good teachers. On Tuesday and Sunday nights we have devotionals where 70s or mission presidents will speak and Wednesday is P-day. P-day we wake up at like 5:30 to leave to go to the São Paulo Temple all morning and get back at about noon where we eat lunch and write letters and get our 30 minutes to email. After that, we have free time to do laundry or go wander around outside and buy stuff. There is a really good bakery, a cool place to buy ties, a paper supply store, a supermarket, shoe store, Churrasco (like the Brazilian restaurant we went to in Provo), bunch of other shops for like clothing and stuff and a few corner open air cafe places.

More about the food: every day for breakfast we get ham or bologna and cheese sandwiches and cream of wheat-ish porridge stuff. About once a week we will be really lucky and get like potato flour pancakes or cereal. The cereal is delicious, its chocolate frosted flakes! I miss eggs and bacon though. If we ever get eggs the yolk will be pre broken and cooked (gross). Lunch is usually excellent, there will be the meat of the day, beans and rice, Pão (bread), salad, and fruit. The fruit is always fresh and delicious. The fruit juice is always way better than the dessert which is usually a pudding-like substance that has a random flavor. They are really good about 20% of the time. My favorite is Feijoada, when they cook in a bunch of meat in with the beans and rice. It’s really, really good and a staple here.

Well I’m out of time all, I love you all so much. Have a spectacular week! Type you next week!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

May 18, 2011

I love you all so incredibly much! i dont know how i can possibly explain what a help and streangth you all have been to me my whole life! i have had the some of the most spectacular testimony building experiances in my life here at the CTM but as i look back it is all because i have been prepared my whole life by my wonderful parrents and family, i would not be here if it was not for you and i am eternally grateful for it. I cant print out my emails while im here and with the ticking timer in the corner of the screen im trying to do my best to remember this week. the days seemed very long at fist but the more time i spend here the shorter they become. Getting along with my companions is always a little rough, we dont exactly see eye to eye about how closely we should keep the MTC schedule and stuff, but its been getting a lot better, i just got to keep doing what im doing and hopefully they will come around and see the importance of following even the little random rules of what we should do when. we are learning a good amount about our purpose as missionaries and how to get to know and begin teaching investigators, but we spend a majority of the time working on the language which is quite boring, especially when my companions who actually need it nod off every five minutes. . . but i cant really complain, they have been getting a lot better and this week we are going to start actually trying to learn the lessons in portuguese so im really excited for that. i can speak well enough to hold a conversation with anyone here, as long as they speak slowly enough for me to understand.  We go to the temple every P day and i love it, the temple is beautiful. also after this me and my comps are gonna hit the town and see if we can get our hands on some delicious treats from a shop a few blocks over. its been really hot the past couple weeks but the past few days it has ben cooling down a lot, i might even wear a long sleeve shirt tomorrow. . . Im really glad to see you are all doing well! i hope that you all can feel the blessings of my service, i certainly am. I got my first letter from Rebecca Today!  its postmarked may 9th so maybe that gives an idea of how long it will take. please tell her that she is being the exact opposite of a distraction in every way; she seemed a little concerned about that. well i love you all so much! im running out of time! Tell jessica that i know she will do spectaculary on all her tests so not to worry about it. I love you all so much! i know, just like dad, that this church is absolutely positively true, there is no other explanation. tchau all!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

1st Letter

Hey Family! i love you all so much! i only get half an hour on wednesdays (p day) to email you and i spent a lot of it reading your letters so i dont have much time to write!
The MTC is great! the food is real brazilian stuff and really really good! im afraid ill pack on  a few pounds before i head out!
right now im scheduled to stay here for 8 more weeks like normal but they are gonna start testing us soon so i might get accelerated, but  i hope i dont because i am really learning a lot here, just about the little facets of sharing the gospel with people and how to follow all the misssion rules all the time and stuff. the return key on my keyboard stopped working so no more paraagraphs for you guys, sorry. i have two companions here, Elder Sanchez and Elder Bender, they are from northern california and corvallis oregon respectively. there are a lot of people here from the northwest because thats the only region here that is letting visas through. I love being here with the brazilian people, they are so fun and happy and outgoing and even if they dont understand you they still try to communicate and say hi every time you see them. its hot here, never gets below 80 degrees even at night and is really humid, but our classrooms have air conditioning so its bearable. my two companions are the only ones in my district so its just the three of us and our instructers most of the day, so we either learn a lot or we just sit and talk about random culture stuff. im having a lot of fun here, its pretty awesome. we get to leave the CTM as much as we want on P days, we have a few blocks we are allowed to roam and do whatrever we want, thats really awesome. We went to the temple this morning for the first time and that was interesting, the session was in english for all the missionaries, and it was cool to see how the church is exactly the same everywhere. I love you all so much! one week down, 103 to go. but the only thing im counting down to is when i can speak the language well enough to actually share the gospel with them, i learned all the grammer rules in school, so now all it is is hearing it constantly and trying to speak it all the time. i love you all so much! my timer is running out so i got to go! ill write you again next week! Até mais! Tchau!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Letter from the MTC

Dear Parents,

We are happy to send the good news that your missionary has arrived safely at the Brazil MTC.  What a great joy and privilege it is to greet each missionary as they come through the front door of the MTC for the first time. We promise to take good care of your missionary.

They now have companions and are settled into their rooms.  They are assigned to a district with capable and caring instructors for language and lesson study.  The branch presidents and their wives will soon give them a second greeting.  These couples embrace and watch over the missionaries and always develop a great love for each one.

The MTC has a full time live-in physician to care for their health needs.  He is assisted by his able wife. We are also happy to report that the Cafeteria food is abundant and delicious.

Your missionary will be able to e-mail home on Preparation Day after a morning at the Temple.  This will be either Tuesday or Wednesday, depending on individual assignments.

Your very important young missionary is about to make an eternal difference in the lives of others.  We hope you will be encouraged and comforted by this quote by President Lorenzo Snow: “There is no mortal man that is so much interested in the success of an elder [sister] when he is preaching the gospel as the Lord that sent him to preach to the people who are the Lord’s children.”

Please accept our love,

President Donald L Clark and Sister Zaza Clark

ADDITIONAL  information . . .  

DO not send packages to the Brazil Missionary Training Center. All packages must be sent directly to the mission where your missionary will be serving not the MTC. If you have already mailed a package to the Brazil MTC and it arrives after your missionary has left for the field, please understand that the package cannot be forwarded to his or her mission and will be returned to you. The only other option is for us to open the package and forward the letters and photographs, giving the rest of the content of the package to the missionaries that are here.
WE Strongly eNCOURAGE sENDING HAND WRITTEN LETTERS. Please write your missionary´s full name. Your missionary will provide you with his district and box number. Also, please DO NOT SEND ANYTHING BY FEDEX, DHL, UPS, or other private carriers.  The cost to get this type of correspondence is exorbitant.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Ready to Go

Bags all Packed!


Goodbye Hugs
for Mom and Dad

Going Through Security

And he is OFF!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Set Apart as a Missionary

Kevin is now a Missionary!

On December 8, 2010  Kevin received his mission call to serve in the Brazil Londrina Mission where he would teach in Portuguese.  We were all excited as he opened and read his call while we watched on skype (he was attending BYU at the time).  His only disappointment was that he would need to wait until May 4th to go.   So he signed up for another semester of college which included a couple of block classes of Portuguese. When he came home for Christmas break, we got busy with all his passport and visa paperwork.  We were all excited when his passport and visa showed up on our doorstep the day he returned from school on April 20th. (This was a blessing, for we had been hearing stories of other missionaries to Brazil not getting them in time to go.) It was a busy 12 days before he left.  Grandparents and friends came to visit; we went to  CTR Clothing to purchase shoes, socks, suits and pants; and we hunted around for all the other needed things on his missionary list. He spoke in church on Easter Sunday where he impressed us all by ending his talk by sharing his testimony in Portuguese!  On May 2 he was set a part as a missionary by President Bair (the same man that delivered him as a newborn), and on May 3rd he flew to Brazil as a full time missionary.

I've created this blog so that I can post his letters and pictures as we receive them for all to see and enjoy.