Alf Gunn BadgeBrasulista #104


Newsletter of the early Brazilian missions, #104

November 16, 2008


Bom dia, irmãos,

I can’t tell you how many wonderful opportunities and acquaintances have come my way since we began this project seven years ago. Thanks for all you do to make it enjoyable.


In this issue:

Pres. Lynn Sorensen missionaries to download DVD from reunion

Please go to Comcast link to bring GLOBO TV to Utah’s Brazilians and amigos

Called to Serve and News from the Field—notes from the USA, Mozambique, Brazil

Meeting Elder Gelson Pizzirani

A young missionary writes home from Brasil—churrasco, dirt, stoning and stakes


Trivia Question: How many stakes are there in the area of Brasilia? (Answer below)



Bill Shurtleff (BSM/BPAM 73-75) writes: “Dear Missionaries of the Missão Brasil Porto Alegre, President Lynn Sorensen group: As you may know, Sister Carla Fuzari Jacobs created a slideshow that she played at our recent reunion.

Her DVD slideshow contained three songs and numerous photos from our mission. A 30 MB version of that 622 MB slideshow has been created and that smaller version placed on the Internet temporarily for you to download. Please click below for instructions on how to download that smaller version and also on how to get a copy of the higher-resolution DVD itself, if you're interested.

Go to:


“Also if still interested you may submit an experience from your mission with Pres. Sorensen to Bill Shurtleff @ to be included in his gift that we gave to him. Deadline is Nov. 30, 2008. We will not be adding any more after that time. Abraços. Bill”


Brazil’s GLOBO TV in Utah

"This comes from Paulo Neves, a Carioca who served in the Brazil Porto Alegre Mission (75-77) and now resides in Orem, UT:  "To all of our friends in Utah--We are trying to get COMCAST to offer GLOBO TV in Utah. GLOBO is currently broadcast through DISH network which offers a poor service. Comcast offers a much better picture quality in addition to good service and price. If you would take just a couple of minutes to send an e-mail to COMCAST by clicking on the link below we would really appreciate it. Please understand that by sending your e-mail you are not by any means committing to any deal with COMCAST. You are simply making a suggestion.


Note: Paulo shares this about himself: “In 1968 in Rio de Janeiro, two hard working missionaries decided to knock on my door before heading home. Long story short, a family of six was baptized. I was a very young boy who enjoyed hanging out with missionaries and spent most of my time at the mission president's home and that's when I came in contact with the English language. Thanks to these missionaries (Elder Dale B. Robertson and Elder Dorrell Henderson) I can speak both Portuguese and English like a native. I went to school in Arizona and served a full time mission in Porto Alegre (75-77). I currently live in Orem, Utah and work as a financial consultant and auditor. If you would be kind enough to publish the GLOBO TV info I would really appreciate it.”


Done. Utah folks, go there, do it.  


Called to Serve

My great companion, Sheldon Nelson (BSM 62-65) of Provo, sends me this news: “Cheryl and I are called to serve as Employment Resource Center Specialists in the North Carolina Charlotte Mission. . . . I was assured that our accommodations will be at least a step above what missionaries had when I served in Brazil (less cockroaches, fleas and bed bugs and no beans and rice for every meal). All this for only $1000/mo, such a deal! We are really pleased with this calling. Cheryl and I have not been in the South and it will be an opportunity to learn more about the people and that part of the country. Also we have absolutely no experience or qualifications for this calling other than a deep desire to serve. Therefore we look forward to having the Spirit direct us as we stumble along. When it is Heavenly Father's work you know you are never alone and He will not let His work suffer because of our inadequacies. We will obviously appreciate your prayers. Love, Sheldon & Cheryl” (


Africa Calls

Back in 2004, Paul G. Ross (BSM 64-66), a patriarch in his South Carolina stake, attended our mission reunion and spoke of a desire to someday serve a mission in Mozambique. He and Jeanne have been there on a proselyting mission since 2007 and Paul is serving as 2nd Counselor in the Maputo Mozambique Mission today. Please see one of his newsletters, which I have attached, to get an idea of what they are doing.


From Debbie and Alan Call (BM 62-65) at São Paulo: “The Perpetual Education Fund here in Brazil is huge – 10,600 participants – so has some huge challenges. The jobless rate here is out of control and the students struggle with finding jobs. We’re working to help start a mentoring program to work with those on the PEF that are unemployed or needing other assistance. We’re also going to learn to teach an employment class through the employment centers where students can learn how to hunt for jobs, learn interview techniques, and learn creative ways to make themselves employable. It’s all about “JOBS” for the people here. Poverty is everywhere. On Sunday evening we’re going to do our first training fireside. In addition to our work with the PEF, we have Sunday callings in one of the branches at the MTC São Paulo.”


“About the food, what can we say but “Ótimo!” We’re eating the freshest, best tasting fruit ever – mamão (papaya), abacaxi (pineapple), cute little baby bananas, maças (apples), and abacate (avocados). Alan likes to throw all of the above in the liquidificador (is that a cool word or what – it means blender) with milk and sugar for a “Vitamina!” But the most wonderful treat is pãozinas which are little loaves of bread that are the just the right size for a single sandwich or they make a great breakfast with a little jam. We have them a lot! Of course, we also have rice and beans. The first week here Debbie learned how to cook rice and beans like a Brazilian” (


Elder Lawrence Rigby (BM c63-64) of Soda Springs, ID writes from the mission field a few months ago: “Good Morning Bro. Gunn, My wife Marsha and I are presently serving in the Texas Houston East Mission as an office couple—secretary, finance and housing. We are having a really great experience here.  We just lived through hurricane IKE and are still cleaning up after it. We had to evacuate all the missionaries for the second time since we arrived two months ago.  Never a dull moment and plenty of excitement! Thanks for efforts to keep us all in touch. Elder Rigby” (


Joe Raynes (BM 65-67) of Orem, UT, sends this note: “Alf, we have 10 children and our youngest just turned 19. I have been retired for six years so we were ready to go on a mission. However, I was recently called to the Church curriculum committee so that is our mission for awhile. We have lived in Bolivia for two years and in Mexico for a year so we don't know if we would go to Brazil or ?. We also live in Mongolia on a Fulbright--maybe Mongolia. Thanks for what you do so well.” (


Notes from Alf

In 2005, on my way to Brazil I met Gelson and Mirian Pizzirani at the Dallas Fort Worth Airport and made their acquaintance. They were coming from General Conference where he had been sustained as a new Seventy and they were dressed elegantly. I was traveling in blue jeans. But when we discovered each other we became immediate brothers and hit it off fine. At Miami International Airport he hosted me in the Executive Lounge as we shared experiences. At the TAM Brazilian Airlines ticket counter, unnoticed by me, Gelson had quietly upgraded my seat to First Class or Executive First Class or whatever the best was that TAM Airlines offered, and I found myself eating filet mignon and laying back to sleep for the overnight flight to São Paulo. Turns out Brother Pizzirani was an executive of TAM Airlines. Today he and Sister Pizzirani are presiding over the Brazil Brasilia Mission.


Recently I heard the name “Brother Pizzarini” in the Seattle Temple and soon met Elder Pizzirani’s son, Thiago, who works for our well-known computer software company up here in Washington. Of course I sent him the Brasulista, and was able to help his mother-in-law, Maria Manuela Bittencourt, make a connection with Elder Richard W. Kennedy (BM 66-67) of Sandy, UT, the missionary who helped her family to join the Church in 1966 at São Paulo. The family now hopes to meet with Elder Kennedy to show him the 3rd generation of faithful members due to his service in Brazil.”


Item: I stumbled upon a blog posting of a letter from a missionary serving in the area of Brasilia now and I was impressed with the spirit of urgency in the Lord’s service the young Elder shared. It reminded me of a time in Porto Alegre shortly after the military “revolution” in 1964, when I came to realize that perhaps the most important work that was being done in that big country was being done by a handful of young missionaries.


Here, then, is a recent letter home that may remind you of your mission days:


“Worry not, Mother, I'm being very well fed. There's a restaurant in Planaltina that gives a discount to the missionaries. We eat there a few times a week. It's amazing food. There is a thing called "churrasco" (shoo-ha-sko) here in Brazil that I'm going to miss so so SO much when I leave. It's like barbeque, only better.


“I love fast Sunday. I went to two Sacrament meetings this last week and bore my testimony both times. I have no idea how I'm ever going to speak in Church if it’s not in Portuguese.

“People think missionary work is all miracles and incredible spiritual experiences--and that is some of it--but there is a lot of walking from place to place and asking for directions and people not being home and, in my area, a LOT of dirt and mud.


“Oh here's something. This week the four of us were all asleep in our room at about midnight when a rock came flying through our window and got glass all over our beds. Nobody was hurt, but it startled the H out of me. Satan doesn't want the missionaries to sleep well. The next day we talked to a 16 year old kid walking down the street and invited him to go to church. He went, and liked it a lot, and now he is going to get baptized next week. I'm pretty excited. We're hoping his Mom and Sister get baptized the next week.

“I have to say, I'm so honored to be in Planaltina. I've been here on and off in my mission, and this is where I want to stay until I'm done. We need to work hard and baptize a lot of people here. Particularly men. We need 60 tithe-paying Melchizedek Priesthood holders in the Planaltina District to have a Stake. The District President, Leandro (who was also one of President Cardon's missionaries and one of President Aidukaitis' companions), was telling me on Sunday that he was talking to Pres. Aidukaitis on the computer and he had mentioned that President Monson sent him (Pres. Aidukaitis) a message asking "How's Planaltina?" President Monson is very aware of Planaltina and the fact that a Temple in Brasilia (which would serve the entire interior of Brazil) depends on this District. There are currently 11 Stakes in and around Brasilia. We need 12 to qualify for a Temple. It all depends on Planaltina. It all depends on 60 men. If only the world knew how important this is and how close we are! The PROPHET wants a Temple here. The LORD wants a Temple here. There is no Mission President in the world more closely watched than President Pizzirani.” (Posted recently by the parents of Elder Jordan Hoon of Mesa, AZ)


Um abraço,


Alf Gunn (BSM 62-65)

Gig Harbor, WA   253-851-1099


Attached is 14 Oct 2008 document.


Posted by Ron and Andrea Hoon Comments of their son Jordan Hoon.



Write about the Ross couple in Moz and attach newsletter from My Documents, 14 Oct 2008 document.

*Ross, Paul Gregertsen and Jeanne 64-66 St. Matthews, SC 803-874-1723 Patriarch, int in Moz, Serving health mission in Moz 10/08 Rachael Ross, Phone: (803) 874-2080, Cell: (803) 760-5820 E-mail: went in 9/08. Proscelyting msn and 2nd Counselor in Maputo Mozambique Msn. 07-09.


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