Monday, December 29, 2014

Feliz Natal/ Ano Novo!!!

Well let me start by saying it was awesome getting to talk to yall!!!!!!! I know the connection was not the best but we get what we get;) and honestly this late in the mission it is more about hearing yall and getting to chat and most importantly having the opportunity to bear my testimony for yall. That really means alot to me. I want each of yall to know what the mission has done to me and for me. It has changed me beyond description. Im grateful everyday for the chance to be here in Brazil sharing this wonderful gospel. I was telling my companion the other day Brazil has turned into home for me. The first month was difficult adjusting but now Im not reacting to the differences and I dont think twice at what takes place here. Haha .

So since the skype call we had one heck of a day on Saturday. I dont remember if I made mention of the young girl who has a phobia of water. She has tried to have us baptize her 3 times.  every time she gets ready to enter the font, she starts crying and runs away... So on Friday, we passed by to talk with her about what we can do. After much prayer between us as a companionship, we decided it was time to just try and "trick" her in a sense... so we explained the fact we were going to do a practice run with her. We had Bishop pick her up and bring her to the church. We had her change, let her enter the water by herself until she felt comfortable, and then Bishop entered the font with her to merely "show her" where she puts her hands and what he says (the baptismal prayer) haha and then came the best part when /Bishop throws her underneath the water! haha Bishop made sure she went under completely! It was a miracle in itself! I am grateful she was finally baptized and the funny part is after the baptism she came up and said "I wanted to stay in!" But Im grateful for the White Christmas we had in a sense getting to baptise her christmas weekend! It truly was a blessing!! Im glad to hear everyone's Christmas went well! Im soo grateful for all you do for me and I thank my Heavenly Father EVERY SINGLE DAY for all of you! I LOVE YALL!!!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Feliz Natal!!!

Well it has been one heck of a week!! Not to much craziness has happened except for somethings that can only be described as usual in Brasil!! We had transfers this week and let me say it has been amazing having a new companion! Im with Élder Nunes from Rio de Janeiro and dang he is great. for not having any of the same background we get along great!!! Im happy to have him here working with me. What I like most is that we actually joke with one another! haha the day after transfers I woke up and told him that carley would be getting home at like 6 our time and we forgot about it. Haha then at 6 o´clock on the dot as we were walking he tells me to stop. So we stop and he asks "Elder What is happening right now" I being a bit confused said walking to an appointment... and he asks "Noooo what is happening right now at this moment....." and finally it hits me and he justs starts dying laughing its moments like that that make a companionship awesome. We went and had probably the strangest Sunday meeting on the mission... We went to church for one hour cause we went to get our investigators and they took forever!! Our mission president spoke in our ward and then immediately after the meeting our ward mission leader and some young dad in the ward got in to like a brawl outside as one of our companionships here tried to have a baptism. Apparently the young guy head butted his wife.... As i said earlier... only things that happen in Brasil... The whole story will have to wait for in person! Well it is fun having 3 sets of Elders here. We have 3 americans and 3 brazilians! haha it is weird leading everyone cause only two of us stayed and the other elder that was already here only has like 5 weeks on the mission! I LOVE THIS AREA THOUGH!!! Literally the members are soooo amazing! My portuguese isn't a concern of mine anymore which is nice. As carley can attest once you stop thinking about the language the mission is SOOOOO much fun!! but as far as logistics We are going to skype from here ON Christmas Day at 6 oclock our time here so i think it will be like 2 oclock your time there?i think i still have a list courtney sent last christmas with all your account names and stuff so i will use that to call. keep your emails open so we can communicate if need be. LOVE YOU ALL!!!! FELIZ NATAL!!!

skyping with Elder Schoen on Christmas (Cam & Courtney's call)

Monday, December 15, 2014


Well as you all now Carley is coming home this week and as for me here in Brasil we are also having our tranfers. I will be staying here in Ariston and will be getting a new companion- Elder Nunes i think is his name... I don't know anything about him so you'll have to wait until next week to know more about him. Well for my thoughts on this past transfer it is easier to relate to a common phrase that is applicable at least one time on every missionary's mission. This past transfer was my "Gethsemane". I spent more time pleading with the Lord during this transfer than I think the entire rest of my mission combined. It was a hard one to say the least for many different reasons but as we all know there is always a sunrise to every sunset, and I am super pumped for this coming transfer. I am going to make the most out of it! I'm really proud/excited for Carley!! what a mission she served! Give her a big bear hug for me!

As for this week and as mom and Courtney saw we had probably the most special baptism thus far on the mission for me. We baptized a man who is confined to a wheel chair after an accident he suffered more than 5 years ago.

It was a very special moment for me as I truly felt and imagined the love and happiness our Father in heaven was feeling as his son entered the font with more problems than one deserves to have, but putting all that behind him only looking forward. It was a moment I will never forget. I absolutely love this ward. They are all soooooo amazing!! I look forward to these next 7 weeks serving here in this area with a new companion as we bring souls closer to Christ!! 

Christmas is right around the corner as well as well as skyping yall:) It should be an awesome next couple of weeks;) LOVE YALL!!!! MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!! WELCOME HOME CARLEY!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, December 8, 2014


We saw the miracle of a baptism this week and because of one mother setting the example by being baptized yesterday, we have marked 2 more dates for this week with two of her children! As well we have a baptism for our investigator "M" who was only waiting for clearance which was given by our Mission President! So we hope to have 3 baptisms this week!!

We have made a goal of trying to work a little smarter this week. Because of the size of our area we end up walking alot because we are having to go from one place to another and it can take a ton of time. So we are trying to set appointments that live close together at the same time roughly! We hope to see miracles from our efforts!

I was rather sick saturday and sunday and with the sickness brought the first  and second time throwing up on the mission. but Im recovering now so all is well! Not sure what i got but it knocked me out pretty bad! some brasilian bug prabably! Hope to see  a ton of miracles this week!! LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!!!

The awesome routes we get to take!

Monday, December 1, 2014

No time this week

Well a quick email this week to let you all know I am healthy and happy and also that I dont have time to email back today! We went to Vinte e Cinco de Março! haha look it up!!! It was very fun! Had an awesome week! Haha I can honestly say I TOTALLY forgot about thanksgiving.... Literally no one knew... That is brasil for you! Thanks for all the emails!! Sorry no response this week but email me next week and I will respond!! Have a Great week!! LOVE YALL!!!

Willy Wonka Fruit Display

This is just one corner. Crazy! Like NYC!

Hard to tell, but this hill is practically straight up and down.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Feliz Dia dos Ações de Gracas!! (Thanksgiving) ;)

Well Good week for sure this week! I had the best numbers I have had thus far on the mission this week. We marked 15 baptismal dates and found 27 new investigators! Very hard work and the reward was very sweet! We did not have a baptism this week which was hard but we are trying to help one of our investigators be baptized at the end of this week as well!! 

Pray for "M.P". We went to the temple today and it was great being there! We only did baptisms cause we got there a little late but it was great having the chance to help each of those people accept the first ordinance of the gospel! My companion and I are doing fine. It will be thanksgiving this week and I want to let everyone know I'm soooooooooooo thankful for yall and everything you do for me!!! 

I know that is super simple but we only have two hours now on the computers (new rule) so I have to be quicker! Today also marks 1 year and 2 months on the mission and almost 3 months in Brazil! Time really does fly by!! I love hearing all about your weeks and although I wont be able to respond in depth anymore I still love hearing all about it!! I will continue to send pics!! I love taking pictures here! There is some crazy stuff!! Funniest thing that happened this week was as we were walking home from a lunch appointment with the other set of elders in our ward an orange came flying out of nowhere and nailed one of the elders walking in the arm it was a bunch of young men!! hahahah everyone was laughing soooo hard. You know you've changed on a mission when you first reaction is to laugh instead of chase the kids down. We were just impressed with the accuracy of the throw! he had to be like 20 yards away!! but good week nonetheless!! LOVE YOU ALL!!!! Happy thanksgiving!!!! Help the cowboys win for me!!!

At the temple

Largest church building I've seen.

Look what I found! I'll go get a pretzel in honor of Mom one day.

Monday, November 17, 2014


Well it is sad that I'm not very good at the puns so yeah my subject lines will usually always be super boring... But the good news is my new area is AWESOME!!! Man I love the people here. The ward is a few weeks away from splitting because of the size of the ward!!! the work here is crazy!! we are teaching like mad men!! My new comp is from Chile and he has 4 months on the mission, but acts like he has 24 months under his belt. He likes going a thousand miles an hour and I just let him wear himself out most days. Haha like Thursday we had to stop at around 7 because he needed to sit down...I am going to let him wear himself out a little bit just enough to be able to talk to him about how things are going to work.. The members love me too! I am speaking actually really well all it took was a new area to boost my confidence;) We have another companionship in our ward with us. They are both Americans. One is a previous assistant who goes home the end of this transfer and the other is a fresh off the bus from the MTC missionary. The new missionary is from Texas to and is kinda lacking on the Portuguese but I'm trying to help my Texas brother out;) And no we don't all live together...Too bad I know... But the big news this week is we  had a baptism!! They had been teaching a really less active family (the mom is a returned missionary from Brazil) and the mom is coming back to activity. There 11 year old son said he wouldn't get baptized unless the dad baptized him..but the dad is against the church. We had a heart to heart with him and the mom and he accepted baptism and the cool thing is he wanted me to do it. It was a very warm welcome to the area! I am really looking forward to the work here and helping the people of Carapicuíba (the city, Ariston is the name of the ward) accept the gospel.

Pray for my companionship please that we can continue to get along and that he can speak Portuguese and not Spanish... haha. He always is trying to explain things in Spanish which is not good for me when I'm trying to learn Portuguese still!!! But it is fun hearing Spanish and practicing;) I LOVE YALL!!

Well this coming preparation day will be switched to next tuesday and we will be going to the temple in São paulo. I am not sure how much time i will have next week to email so if i dont get to you know why!! I will hopefully be able to read all of them but i probably wont get to respond to all of them!! I love you al!! have a fantastic week!!! 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Para Ariston Eu Vou!!!

Well what a week full of excitement!! Haha actually in reality not a whole lot happened but it was a very fun week! The biggest news has to be the fact that Transfers are here once again and To my great suprise I have been assigned to go to the Capital to be in the Alphaville zone to serve in Ariston! I will be with a Spanish speaker there who got to Brasil to start his mission when I got to Brasil to start my mission here. I will be going there to be the senior companion which in itself is a little scary to me but I will make the most of this opportunity for sure. I am told the area I am going is all Favella.... and for those who dont know what a favella is... its a neighborhood with houses built all over the place on top of, beside, in front of every way imaginable. The great part is that in a favella you have humility. I am very excited for the opportunity to go there! I am leaving my area here at a kinda hard time. We have a baptism marked for this Saturday for such an awesome investigator who came to both sessions of Stake Conference this weekend.. I will really miss seeing that but the Lord wants me in Ariston! I will no doubt see some very interesting things in my area and will make for great experiences to share with yall when I return home! Haha I am a little sad to leave my American companion but we will see each later in the mission probably. I am pumped for the opportunity to lead in Ariston. I feel like my Portuguese is pretty manageable right now.. Not fluent by any means but I am beginning to feel more comfortable. So this next transfer should be a good one. I love you all soooo much!! Please continue to pray for me and my area as well!! Tenha uma Boa Semana!

Ants in Brasil
Christmas tree in Brasil
Enjoying some fun on a see saw that im thinking wasnt built for two grown missionaries;)
Haha the evolution of missionaries in the Trujillo zone
One of my favorite families
Cool animals in Brasil

Monday, November 3, 2014

It's beginning to feel a lot like SUMMER

ITS SOOOOO HOT!!!!! haha like seriously.... Im sweating like a pig.... but all is good cause im dropping weight;) Haha during this week it rained super hard one day and was a little chillier outside, but the following day I legitimately thought it was a joke cause when we walked outside from a lesson it was pouring rain, but the best part was that the sun was still shining... like seriously there was like three clouds in the sky.. and it was pouring!!

But it is good that it rained cause we are in a drought here. Well we had a pretty good week this week for the most part. We were out of our area a ton helping other people but when we were in our area we were trying to find some people to teach. We are a little small in our teaching pool. But we did find an awesome guy who is all about turning his life around. He has a problem with drinking but he is doing everything we ask him to do, so the Lord will definitely help him quit. My companion and I are doing great still. It is kinda funny cause we are a lot different and think about things differently but for some reason we have yet to fight or let our pride stop us from resolving something. I think honestly it is because we have both been on the mission for so long we just know how to work with one another. We painted an entire gym for a children's school here. It was a great service. I love brasilians kids, they are soo funny and sweet. They just remind me of cassidy when she was small. Super happy and energetic ALL the time!;) Not much by way of stories this week.. sorry yall. But my companion and I are getting prepped for christmas. we have a christmas tree set up and oranments are getting put on one day at a time. Christmas music is being played constantly in the apartment;) We have transfer calls next week and we are both really hoping that we stay as companions for christmas. Two americans on christmas will be nice;) Hope you all have an amazing week!!! LOVE YALL!!

Monday, October 27, 2014

1 year, 1 month

Its been a good week this week. Not to much news happening here. The work is still moving on unhindered! We did an activity as a zone this week in one of the harder areas in our zone. All the missionaries in our zone went to São Bento and we gave out Book of Mormons to the people there. We gave out close to 140 books of Mormon! it was great! But one cool experience that happened this week happened yesterday. As my companion and I were doing some finding yesterday in the Centro (the center of the city) we felt the need to talk to a man sitting alone on a park bench. As he walked up he started smiling. We asked if he had already spoken with missionaries before and he said he had already been baptized. We then asked if it was in our church, and he politely said no. He went on for awhile talking and we could tell there was something wrong so we simply asked if he knew of his purpose in life. He began to cry and vented to us that he had been looking for some time for a way to change his life around. He told us of the addictions he has and how they have cost him everything. He is living on the streets right now but we have set up a time to meet with him tomorrow in the same place we met with him yesterday. The funniest part was after we left we went a little ways off and were talking to someone else and as we looked back at him he was walking around the courtyard showing the Book of Mormon we left with him to all the other people sitting around there. haha it was definatley an experience that I will remember! Well yesterday my companion and I sang in church! haha it went well, no harm done! we sang "When I am Baptized" the first verse in english. it was awesome! we got a ton of compliments. This week should be another good one! Love you all!!!

a little boy who loved cameras and wanted me to take a pic of him

then the little boy wanted to take my picture

That's a lot of meat!


Monday, October 20, 2014

Então, Boa Semana!

Well as I am sure you are all wondering how the new companion is, he is great. We are having a lot of fun together! He has been here for 10 months already so he speaks really well already. He has a year and 6 months on the mission and he was waiting for 6 months in Cleveland. He is a good missionary and he is helping me a lot with learning the language and how to say some of the slang and some of the different sayings. We were working hard and found 25 new investigators and set 3 baptismal dates. We are working in one of the harder areas in Sorocaba because our area covers the richer side of sorocaba/trujillo. but none the less we are working on helping the people here come unto Christ! I was studying pretty in depth the gospel of Jesus Christ this week. In my studies and using the scriptures I came to a very important realization. If you look throughout the scriptures, especially in the Book of Mormon, and look for any scripture regarding the gospel of Jesus Christ you will see an important part of the Gospel that is often overlooked- that of the principle of Missionary work. Take 2nd Nephi 2: 6,7 they speak of the power of the Atonement and the need of Faith in Jesus Christ, and then comes verse 8 which tells of the importance of making these things known unto the inhabitants of the Earth! I will not say I am adding another principle to the gospel only merely stating the important fact that as a part of Showing our Faith comes the need to open our mouths. I had to wonderful opportunity to speak in church yesterday! I spoke for 20 minutes on the importance of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It went very well and I was grateful for that opportunity to 1) share my testimony with the members and investigators there and 2) practice my language ability;) Haha I love you all so much and am growing more and more each day in to many ways to name;) I am continuing to pray for each and every one of you! If you need anything more please let me know! I love you all! Tem uma boa Semana! Have a great week!

Guess Who in Portuguese

Gringotts Bank

You know it's hot when...

This goat wanted to be friends

shoes before (worn out soles)

shoes after (only $15 USD)
Dad would be totally jealous, these candies taste just like Key Lime pie.
Pink house, maybe an option for Cassidy?

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Oi Família e Amigos!

So sorry about this week but i wont have time to respond or even read your emails from this week. We went to the temple today in Campinas and it was much needed. No better place to feel the spirit of the Lord stronger than the temple! This past week was pretty uneventful except we did have conference which was awesome! The only thing that wasnt awesome about it was that i had to watch in portuguese which was rough, i understood about 50 to 60% of what was said but i will just need yall to send me a copy of the ensign with the talks! Sorry this is super short but next monday you can expect a long email to all of you! :) I have to lead our area tomorrow with another missionary coming over for the day so please pray for me... Also We have president interviews tomorrow which i am super excited about! I will talk to yall more on Monday! LOVE YALL!!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Então, Que uma Semana!

Haha well it has been one heck of a week! The language is coming ever slowly but nonetheless surely! I am making progress which is comforting;) It is difficult for me because I am coming from speaking the majority of the lesson to only being able to share bits and pieces of lessons here... super humbling. It is weird to hit my year mark this thursday... kinda crazy to me because it has not felt like a year.. time just flies. Haha we have been working like crazy. On tuesday we found 11 new investigators and had 6 investigators attend church. We are struggling getting our investigators to commit to baptism but we are working fervently to help them.

Elder Schoen loves the scriptures! Even in Portuguese.

"A Brasil delicacy," says Elder Schoen

I´ll be honest this is super hard coming from one mission to another that is completely different. I didn't think it would be as hard as it has been. But I can honestly say that I have grown so much closer to my Savior and I can testify of the comforting power the atonement has. Working here in Brasil is taking everything I have and by the time we return home at nights i am exhausted- physically mentally emotionally spiritually! Haha i am feeling the effects of hard work all throughout my legs;) Brasil is beautiful! the people are awesome and the language is.... fun;) I am working on bettering my studies here because I have been a little distracted so i will hopefully have a good week of studying. I am sending a letter to yall this week so look for it in the future. As I come up on the year mark and subsequently hump day mark I look back as well as ahead and see such awesome experiences that I have had and will continue to have! thank you all for the love support and prayers! I have definitely needed them! Have an awesome week!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Estou no campo finalmente!

Haha so i wont write in portuguese partly because it will probably be a little wrong and take me forever but the good news is is that the language is coming along quite nicely!

I made it to Brasil!

Haha i live with my companion and two other elders. my companion is from cape verde (islands of the cost of Africa) and the other two are native brasileiros então it truly is baptism by immersion with the language! But none the less it is sweet!!!

My companion and me

I love being here! My companion is sweet! He doesnt speak a lick of english and so i am teaching him english and he is teaching me portuguese;)

Our apartment over looks our entire area. My new area is Trujillo em Sorocaba.

view from our apartment

My ward is huge and we meet in the stake center which as you can see in the picture is set up on a hill so everyone can see!

I spy with my little eye...our church!

Better view of our church

Haha everything is different here! everything! for example church starts with priesthood and relief society and then sunday school and then sacrament meeting. the parking for the church is underground and the church building is protected by a huge gate! The people here are soo friendly! We can talk to anyone and they all are sooo nice.

Sao Paulo Brazil temple

so much graffiti
Well like you all know all i eat here is rice and beans for every single meal;) but luckily they always have a meat with it! and i love rice and beans! as you can tell by all the exclamation points I absolutely love it here! Haha I have soo many stories already that i will share when i return... Haha so i found out that the transfer that will most likely be my last happens in august.... dang haha i didnt even get to celebrate my hump day!! oh well!! I will hit the ground walking (because we literally walk everywhere...) seriously our area is probably the equivalent of walking Keller ever day!! its huge haha i will let you know when i am in need of new shoes which will probably be soon;) Maybe some dr. martins in honor of courntey:) But everthing is awesome here! I love my mission president i love my companion and i love being here in brasil! these next couple of weeks/ months will be difficult but they are soooo worth it!! cant wait to be speaking with ease!

My companion and me again.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Bro is in BRAZIL!

My parents got an e-mail from Dallas' mission president this included the  following info.

"Thank you for sharing your son with the Brazil São Paulo North Mission. We love him already and feel so grateful to be serving with him at this sacred time when the Lord is hastening the Work of Salvation."


Presidente Timothy and Sister Linsey Farnes

Monday, September 1, 2014


Woahhhhh.... craziness!!! Haha it is funny emailiing right now because in like 4 days i will be off again and back out into the mission field to meet my new trainer again! haha I dont even know how to describe this last week! super fun and super weird to be back in the MTC! and the biggest question i am sure you are all wondering is how is the language going! And honestly i am doing way better than what i imagined! honestly i can understand probably 60 to 80 percent of the language depending on who is talking. Speaking is the hard part but with the practice we have everyday teaching in the language i am improving dramatically! I only have 40 minutes to email today because of the CTM so i will give you a better run down when i am in the field but know that i am super happy to be here and am loving every moment of this! I LOVE Everything about Brasil!!!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Brazil Bound soon!

So I am loving every second of my mission thus far and the idea of going to Brazil has only fanned the flames within me and made me want to go a thousand miles an hour this week! Not much by way of successes but none the less I am stoked to be a missionary! I am with Elder Gamino now cause another missionary went home and so another elder needed a companion so they broke our trio up... kinda depressing but we still see each other often! It is killing me to think I will have to leave this branch behind!!

I love these members sooo much! Today we had the chance to go to the Temple. What a great blessing for me. It did a lot of good in calming my nerves!

Transfer calls are going to happen on Saturday so I am assuming President will let me know these next few days about the visa because for some reason he wont tell me.. probably cause he wants to avoid me getting "trunkie" even though I have known for like a month... oh well alls well that ends well! Love Yall!!

Lake Kaweah!!

Put your shoulder to the wheel!


The field is white, all ready to harvest!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Bom Semana!

Haha man before I start into the week let me just say that this tri-companionship is the funniest thing ever.. I have never laughed sooo hard! The best part is the work that we are getting done! I could not ask for a better way to leave Fresno than how things are playing out right now! I am almost emotional thinking about leaving this place. I told my Branch President yesterday about My Visa and how I will be departing for Brazil soon. So he decides that at the end of Sacrament meeting to have me come up and give my testimony. Of course I am used to it by now, but for some reason when i got up to the pulpit I was nearly overcome with emotions which was super hard for me... No one else knows about the visa so I had to stay strong and not give away the sadness i felt! didnt want people thinking i was some softy for no reason;) But honestly I am going to miss this place sooo much! I will never forget the memories i made while here! So many stories, especially one of the greatest miracles I have ever seen that I will tell you about when i call at the airport! So many special and lasting moments that make missions soooooo worth it. The best line I heard this week came from an 18 year old thinking about serving a mission who said "Seeing the way you three act and enjoy your missions really makes me want to go!" and honestly its sooo true. If it isn't fun you are doing it wrong!! I Love you all!!

Monday, August 4, 2014


Haha so this week has been a fun one for sure. We had a lot of finding opportunities and found a pretty cool guy named Giovanni. He says he is a rapper so Elder Sims automatically loves him. Speaking of Elder Sims- I love him! He is awesome. He is kinda prideful but it is in a funny way. He had a record deal before his mission he says with Sony music. He says he worked on the show "Victorious" on Nickelodeon (I'm sure Cassidy knows what that is) He is very funny as well and loves basketball which is nice. He is small so it is fun. So an explanation on the subject line- A missionary in a ward in our district went home, so his companion is now with us for the next 4 weeks until the end of the transfer. Crazy part of it was that they were going to move to Modesto (the most northern part of the mission) and just have them be together because there is someone up there who is companion-less in a tri-companionship so they tried to move me up there but funny enough, I am the only one who can drive in our companionship so I got to stay! My members would have been so mad if I had just straight up left without saying anything! Plus I would have been ticked! We had the chance of confirming "A" on Sunday! Soooo awesome!! Like I said This was one of those awesome mission moments I will always remember. This week should be a great one!! LOVE YOU ALL!!!

Also i totally forgot a funny thing that happened!! We almost got eaten by a dog!! a stinkin pitbull!! Crazy fun story that i will tell when i get home... ;) LOVE YALL
 My new companion in the tri-companionship is 5'3". He's a fun-size candy bar.