Alf Gunn BadgeBrasulista #117


Newsletter of the early Brazilian missions, #117

September 14, 2009


Bom dia, irmãos!


“God has his way of knowing all of our talents and uses them where they are needed.” -- Elder J. Ross McLaws


Administrative: We will be locating missionaries who served in Portugal before 1980 and sending the Brasulista to them. This is, in part, to encourage senior missionary service among that group.


In this issue:

An urgent need for missionaries to serve in the PEF program in Brazil

Elder Ralph Brooks reports from São Paulo PEF mission

Brazilian Mission Reunion to honor Presidents Beck and Hicken, October 2

Asael T. Sorensen Missionary Reunion October 1

Cruise Brazil next January

Elder Miner becomes a Gaúcho

Called to Serve: Elder Richard L. Miner, Elder Don Phippen

Elder Jim and Sister Barbara Taylor Granger complete PEF mission

History of construction of the Ipomeia chapel by Ross McLaws



NOTICE: This is sent to us by Tom Rueckert (BM/BCentM 72-74), Director of Finance of the Perpetual Education Fund.  The Perpetual Education Fund has grown significantly in Brazil where nearly 12,000 young adults have received PEF loans. To help sustain these young people and administer the PEF program in Brasil, there is a continual need for senior missionaries. For those who are willing and would be able to serve, please contact Tom Rueckert 801-240-7537 or Daniel Almeida 801-240-0544 .”


Elder Ralph Brooks (BSM 60-62) of Pine Valley, UT, now at São Paulo, fills us in on mission opportunities in the PEF: “Alf, the mission is going great. The Perpetual Education Fund is growing rapidly. We have the opportunity of giving firesides and trainings in stakes within São Paulo and in other parts of Brazil. Travel funds are tight with the recent economic situation, but in spite of it, we manage to teach Brazilians how to enter the Church site and record the specialists’ visits with each PEF participant. I know the Area Welfare Manager would like to place senior couples in any one of the current eight Employment Resource Centers. A request for any of the following: Curitiba, Fortaleza, Manaus, Paulista, Campinas, Porto Alegre, Recife, or Rio would give you a wonderful experience. Working where they have a temple is also a great blessing. Thank you for all you do. Abraços, Elder Brooks” (


Brazilian Mission Reunion

President Wayne M. Beck

and President Lloyd R. Hicken




Friday, October 2nd, 2009   6:45 pm  General Conference Weekend. 

(Yes, it is the night of the BYU-Utah State football game but this is far more important!)


Where:   Bountiful Central Stake Center

               640 South 750 East in Bountiful


Program:  We plan on both President Beck and President Hicken being there and hope to hear from them.  The program will be short and sweet.  After the program, there will be Guaraná and doces with lots of time to visit.  $5 per person will help cover the costs of the reunion.


This is a wonderful opportunity to visit with these two great men and their families.  How blessed we are to have served our missions in Brasil.  How blessed we are to once again be able to hear their counsel and to just be around them.  Do not miss this.  It is important that you be there.  Please contact old companions and mission friends to help get the word out. We need your presence and your help.


For more information

Laird Swensen - 801-803-3108

Wayne Selph - 801-541-6067



THURSDAY, OCTOBER 1, 2009, 7:00-10:00 P.M.


LOCATION:  LDS CHAPEL 6350 S. RODEO LANE (1550 EAST), SALT LAKE CITY, UT (Attended by Gary and Joan Kay)


PROGRAM Visiting and updates from several; also see below highlights

REFRESHMENTS (Cookies and milk and Guarana’)


CONTACTS: GARY KAY (801-277-2307); BETTY HALL 801-968-2778 ( or DAVE RICHARDSON 801 262-5988 (


Update:  Sister Ida Sorensen is now living in New Zealand with her daughter Ellen and Ellen’s husband Don Holsinger. We hope to read a message from Sister Ida if she cannot attend this reunion. Any others who cannot attend are invited to send a message to be read in the reunion. As usual, Gary Kay will provide a review of obituaries, those currently serving missions, news of Brazil, etc.  Request: Please remind ex-missionaries, Brazilians whom we served with, and other members of our group about this reunion.


Question: Any other Brazilian missions holding reunions?


Brother Dick Jensen has been able to make some changes that add two days to next January’s Brazil tour, January 7 through 22, 2010. This will allow us to arrive and get some rest as well as see a little more of São Paulo before we embark on our week-long cruise on the beautiful Costa Cruise Line. See a picture of the ship and read all about this trip at Dick’s web site:

This trip also includes visits to the São Paulo and Curitiba Temples via motorcoach and lodging at excellent hotels. I am looking forward to our group firesides and family home evenings and really relaxing on the cruise. It’s going to be good, folks.


Since we still have spaces available for the trip, please share the information about this trip with people in your ward and other LDS acquaintances who may enjoy a summertime cruise with a group of former Brazilian missionaries during the winter of next January.


Called to Serve

Elder Richard L. Miner (BM 66-68) of Las Vegas, NV, was one of my students at the Language Training Mission in 1966, so it is with special joy that I share this message: “What a special treat as always to read the Brasulista. It came on a special mission call day: We received our call to serve in the Brazil Santa Maria Mission. We will at last be BSM Missionaries. You were all such good examples on the 2007 Tour. Being one of the Brazilian missionaries I sure enjoyed the tour of the South. We were also there to pick up our daughter Shelena from the Santa Maria Mission and I guess it was catching because we sure love Rio Grande do Sul. We just happen to be entering the MTC three days after our youngest daughter Sandi is released from her mission in Canada. We feel we are truly blessed. “Um dia eu voltarei,” a line from my mission song, is coming true again. Saudades from all the experiences we have had with you Alf. Tchau. Richard and Rhea Miner” (


Elder Don Phippen (BM 57-59) and his wife Vickie, from American Fork, are on their third senior couple mission, having served in Curitiba (00-02) and a CES mission in Hartford, CT: “Dear Alf, Thanks for posting the notice about the passing of Sister Olpin. This was my era also and I remember the great work these three wonderful nurses accomplished. We are serving again – just arrived in Tarawa, Kiribati, part of the Marshall Islands Majuro Mission. We are really greenies but we have a wonderful couple here who have taken us under their wings. The people are wonderful, so beautiful with their smiles, their greetings each morning, and their calm temperament. Love, Elder and Sister Phippen” (


Mission Report

Elder Jim Granger (BM 63-65) and his wife Barbara Taylor Granger (BSM construction mission with parents) of Dublin, OH, recently completed their Perpetual Education Fund mission at São Paulo. They write to their many friends:

“Caros Amigos, Eu e a Sister Granger estamos pensando em vocês agora que a nossa missão do Fundo Perpétuo de Educação no Brasil está terminando.


Foi uma benção muito grande mesmo termos recebido o chamado para servirmos com tanta gente de boa vontade e testemunho. Nestes dois anos, pudemos acompanhar o crescimento de 3.000 de alunos seguindo os seus sonhos com a ajuda do FPE. Centenas dos alunos já devolveram tudo que pegaram emprestado do FPE. Pudemos ler muitas histórias de sucesso. Tivemos a oportunidade de nos reunirmos com líderes e membros de estaca nas regiões de Brasília, Recife, Campinas, Curitiba, alem da grande São Paulo. Tivemos a chance de compartilhar o nosso testemunho das bençãos dO Pai que advem ao seguir os conselhos do profeta vivo...e... de desfrutarmos dos recursos que A Igreja-Restaurada oferece aos fieis.  Testificamos que Jesus é o Salvador do mundo e de cada ser que aqui esta`.


É impressionante e até milagroso presenciar o crescimento do Reino de nosso Brasil tão amado...desde a nossa primeira vinda em 1963.  Havia somente 6.000 membros da Igreja no país inteiro em 1964.  Hoje o Reino no Brasil engloba membros em todos os Estados da Federação...e já ultrapassou dos 1.100.000 Santos-dos-Últimos-Dias aqui. Que bom! Observamos boas ações por toda parte. 


As nossas designações no Centro de Treinamento Missionário aos Domingos trouxeram paz e alegria á nossa alma. Pudemos observar de perto a evolução das habilidades e dos testemunhos de quase quatrocentos missionários norte-americanos que pertenceram aos ramos onde nos servirmos. Ao nosso CTM....vimos milhares de outros missionários (brasileiros e norte-americanos) se preparando para levar a mensagem aos que dela necessitam para aliviar os pesares da vida. Ao associarmos com eles e com os líderes ali chamados, o nosso testemunho dA Obra Maravilhosa cresceu.  Puxa Vida!  27-Missões Brasileiras!  285 Estacas e Distritos!


Fizemos outros bons amigos dentre os outros casais missionários e funcionários da Igreja que servem com dedicação por todo canto do Brasil. Sua bondade e carinho estarão fixos na nossa memória para sempre. Obrigado por sua gentileza para conosco. Tivemos ainda o prazer de renovar as nossas amizades com outros amigos das épocas anteriores.  Matamos saudades! E como nós amamos a todos!  O problema que isto traz é de que nos ficamos sempre com saudades não importa nos estivermos.  


Não se pode dizer que a vida cotidiana em São Paulo é facil...mas o povo  enfrenta estes desafios de cabeça erguida.


Recomendamos aos casais que se disponham e que procurem a oportunidade de servir missão de tempo integral.  Podem regozijar-se com as bençãos dO Senhor.   Com todos os tipos de missões que podem escolher, de certo existe um que enquandra na vida da gente. Mandamos o nosso amor. 

Atenciosamente,  Elder Granger (


Thanks to those of you who ordered of “Brazilian Missions” pins in support of the reunion fund of the early Brazilian missions.

These beautiful pins feature the iconic Cristo Redentor statue of Rio de Janeiro—Brazil’s most recognizable landmark—with the gold plates of the Book of Mormon. It says “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints—Brazilian Missions” so it represents all of the missions in Brazil.

If you know of any other persons who would like to order them, please furnish my name and address to them. Um abraço, Alf Gunn 253-851-1099


Alfred Gunn

3720 26th Avenue Court NW

Gig Harbor, WA 98335


Note: Anyone can buy pins. But I only send the Brasulista to those who served before 1980. If you want to forward the Brasulista to younger missionaries, please do so.


Ross McLaws (BM 54-57) shares some interesting history about Ipomeia, SC:

Alf I'm kind of slow at getting you an e-mail regarding the Ipomeia chapel.  It was originally started in 1956 and I believe that Elder Lynn Wallace was the Elder Branch President that was there at that time.  He, the member and his companions built the foundation out of huge rock that was quarried about a mile away and then hauled by wagon to the site and put in place. Elder Wallace was also the supervising Elder who oversaw the contractor as he put up all of the walls and the roof.  I can’t remember the exact date that I arrived in Ipomeia to replace Elder Wallace but it was about time to wire the electricity into the building. The mission had sent us a 3 phase 220 volt generator and it was up to us to wire each of the phases to 110 volts.  Elder Wallace and I had some discussions on how to proceed and then he departed. I became an electrician as the contractor did not have one in his employ.   My companions and I put three sets of lights in both the Rec Hall and the chapel and then proceeded to balance the class rooms, foyers and other areas plus the plugs so that you could turn on a balance of lights to the generator. The first program we held in the Rec Hall was a Christmas program. Right in the middle of which the generator motor threw a rod and quit. We all became mechanics too. 

When I left Ipomeia in March of 1957 to return home we were moved in the building apartment and were holding services there.  The inside was painted and the floors were hardwood and had been sanded and varnished.  I have pictures of several Elders and at least Sisters Fiala and Farnsworth painting the steeple on one of their visits.

I would have loved to have been there and seen the faces of the electricians when they were revamping the building.  God has his way of knowing all of our talents and uses them where they are needed.

Give my regards to all the Brazilians and Brazilian missionaries. Thanks again for all of the news and happening. My wife the former Dirce Oliveira Videira went to Brazil at the end of June for 2 months. Best regards, Elder Joseph Ross Mc Laws (


Até logo, irmãos,


Alf Gunn (BSM 62-65)

Gig Harbor, WA






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