Thursday, September 17, 2015

1 month in Brazil

September 14, 2015

One month in Brazil! But more on that later. Hello everyone! Last p-day was another holiday where everything is closed, so it was pretty much a little bit of work, e-mail, then the house all day. We ´re lucky a little street vendor place was open because we had nada in the house for food! Tuesday for district meeting, we talked about a lot of important stuff. No effort is wasted as a missionary because everyone needs the gospel and you can be planting the seeds of faith for future missionaries, but the fact is, there are people the Lord has prepared for right now and we need to find those people and teach them. Another reason you always need to be in tune with the Spirit. Also, just because you´re out working, doesn´t always mean you´re "out working". You need to be focused and using your time effectively. Also, missionary work without members of the ward isn´t nearly as effective. We had a few lessons with members this week and they went really really well, and they were with people the members referred to us. The ward members are critical in missionary work. We also talked about talking to more people, so this week was contacts, contacts contacts, which I do not like because its hard. It´s soooo nerve racking just talking to people on the street. But it’s a skill I need to learn to master. I learned a lot about people and how the mission field really works this week. Sadly, Anderson, the guy we felt really good about, moved in with his Aunt and we can´t find where he lives. Lots of people don´t know streets and addresses here. Thursday was my one month mark in Brazil and what a day. I was actually on a full day exchange with Elder Castro in Campina Grande and it was awesome. He is the coolest guy, he has such a love for the people, and even though he goes home in a week and half, we worked 10 HOURS that day. A normal day is about 7. I learned a lot of great things and I was really happy. Time goes by slow and fast all at the same time. Had a couple of good lessons with people this week, but sadly no one came to church. Speaking of, I gave my first talk in church here. topic? Missionary work. Pretty much my week!
 Love you all!
All the best! - Elder Carroll

Pizza is not the same in Brazil!

September 7, 2015

Another week! Okay last Monday night was freaking amazing! We went to this pizza buffet, but it´s not like a buffet where you go and pick up some food, then eat, then go back, no. They bring you a different type of pizza every few minutes and you either take a piece or don´t. We barely ate that day so we could have room and boy, we´re we stuffed to the brim when we were done. The pizza was amazing, so many different kinds. I was the "child" of the group and had 12 pieces (who would have thought 12 pieces is only a little bit???) Elder Ramos has 14, Elder Hodges had 15, and Elder Markham had a whopping 19. Craziness! It was so good but we weren’t exactly feeling healthy afterwards, haha. But we didn´t have any big problems, so all is well. Guys will be guys.

 Tuesday was exactly two months since I started my mission, crazy! Wednesday we had zone meeting, where we did role playing in front of the whole zone, which was nerve-racking, but I actually did okay. It´s awesome to see the love the zone has for each other. The district leader, Elder Fanzlau, was on exchange with Elder Ramos for the rest of the day and part of the next, so it was cool having him around, he´s pretty awesome.

Also for Wednesday, we met this guy, Anderson, who had met with the missionaries in Sau Paulo and they were helping him learn English, so when we came by his house, because he´s now living in Sao Jose da mata, he was happy to have us in. He´s super cool and easy to talk to, I feel like I can relate to him well, and he´s justa cool dude. Plus, he came to church on /Sunday, which was awesome! Also, he knew a little bit about the doctrine because of what the other missionaries had taught him, but one of our times we met with him, we taught part of all 4 lessons, all in one sitting! Crazy! I didn´t even know that was possible! Haha.

Happy Birthday Elder Markham! The big 20, very exciting. We just had some cake at Deborah´s house for a little while to celebrate, it was fun. We had fast and testimony meeting on Sunday, so it was definitely awesome hearing people´s testimonies.

One thing I feel I’ve learned a lot this weekend that everything a missionary does works through the spirit. Who we talk to, where we go, what we say, all through the spirit, and the spirt always testifies of truth. I´m so grateful to have a guide in my work, because I certainly couldn´t do this on my own, and I have this guide because it´s not my work, it´s the Lord´s work, and the Lord will always prevail.

 I hope you all have an amazing week, and don´t forget to remember your Heavenly father and your Savior Jesus Christ, for all the things they do for you.

All the best!

The church is true!

- Elder Carroll

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

2 months out!

August 31, 2015

Hey everyone! Tomorrow will mark 2 months since I began my mission! Craziness!

My week. Last P-day wasn´t really much of a P-Day because I had to go to Joao Pessoa to do some legal stuff, part of being an American and coming to Brazil. I woke up at 4:45 and we got back at around 3ish. It took forever! But hey, that´s life.

District meeting on Tuesday, we focused a lot on talking to people about how the gospel can and does bless families, and I’m so grateful for all the things the gospel has done to strengthen my family and I’m so grateful it gives me the opportunity to live with my family forever. No matter what, always cherish your family.

 We don´t have any hot water because something broke, so showers are freaking freezing!

I did splits this week for the first time, which I was really worried about, but it was actually a really good learning experience. I was put with this guy Thales, he´s actually just a member and not a missionary, and he wanted to talk to EVERYONE! Just left and right talking to people, excited, happy, making people laugh but also expressing the seriousness of our message. He taught me a lot about what missionary work should be like and the attitude you should have and I’m grateful for his example.

 Another cool thing, there´s this one girl, Luana, who has been going to church for almost a year but never got baptized because her parents wanted her to wait, we met with them this week and seemingly out of nowhere, they decided to let her be baptized! So we had another baptism this week, and we actually had enough water to fill the font! I was a baptismal witness  for the first time, as well as being in the circle for confirming someone a member of the church for the first time, so that was cool.

 One lady we taught this week was really interesting (not in the best way)  we taught her the first lesson then came back a few days later and asked if she prayed to know if they things we said are true and she said yes she knows it’s true and then we asked her if she´d go to church and she was like ehhh, I don´t think so. Huh? Confusing.

But we had a lot of good lessons this week too, so it´s okay!
That´s my week!
Write me! Send me e-mails!
You don´t have y address just ask!
I love you all! - Elder Carroll

e-mail address:
snail mail address: (letters) Elder Jeffrey Benjamin Carroll
                                 Brazil Joao Pessoa Mission
                                 Rua Deputado Jose Mariz, 515
                                 Joao Pessoa Joao Pessoa - PB

snail mail address: (packages) Elder Jeffrey Benjamin Carroll
                                 Brazil Joao Pessoa Mission
                                 Rua Deputado Jose Mariz, 515
                                 58042-020 Joao Pessoa - PB

Friday, August 28, 2015

2nd Week!!!

August 24, 2015

2nd week!!! Wow, it is insane here. This work is harder than I ever could have imagined but it´s worth it. The kind of person I know I’ll be at the end of all this is the person I´ve always wanted to be. I know through my Savior Jesus Christ, I can do all things.
Okay, so my week. So starting with last Monday, because we went into the "big city" and didn´t have a lunch appointment with a member like we have every other day besides p-day, what did we have for lunch? Subway. Ha! So funny. Oh by the way, I don´t know if I mentioned it in my last e-mail but the name of my area is Sao Jose da Mata. It´s small but full of great people.
We had zone conference on Tuesday, so that was cool. I met Elder Talbot from the Heritage Ward, so it was cool to see a face from my stake in Texas, even though we´d never met before. After meeting and lunch for zone conference, we watched Meet the Mormons, so that was kinda funny.
Wednesday I found out that our plunger was a hanger, so that was fun.
Okay Thursday, craziness. Contacting and tracting, talking to person after person, door after door, nobody wanted to talk to us, not a single one. Then we had an appointment at night and it was the best thing that´s happened here. We had taught the mom and son before, but not the dad, so we re-taught the Restoration. I could feel the Spirit so strong, I was able to say more things, and I really felt they understood what I was saying even though I was making a lot of mistakes. The joy after that lesson was so real, it was awesome. A mission really is all about loving and serving other people. Then that night, something funny happened. So earlier in the day, my comp and house mates were telling me about this thing called a chakka (I have no idea how to spell it) which they said was a super deadly animal. So Thursday night I’m just about asleep and Elder Hodges is like, Elder, something just crawled under your bed! (Cause I’m on the bottom bunk) He ran over, turned the lights on and was like, oh freak, it´s a chakka! He got the other Elder´s and they were all freaking out trying to figure out what to do, and I totally didn´t believe them. Then Elder Markham got a giant kitchen knife and ran in and tackled the chakka and started stabbing it. The chakka? It was a fruit. So that was fun.
Elder Hodges has officially decided to NEVER speak to me in English, even if I don´t understand something, he just tries to explain a different way or use hand motions or I look it up in the dictionary. It makes it difficult, but I will only learn if I stop speaking English and I know this will help me.
More teaching and knocking doors, I understand Elder Hodges better but not much more of the native Brazilians. I can say a little bit more. It´s a very slow process, but it comes from patience, a heck of a lot of hard work, and trusting the Lord.
Ether 12:27 – “And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.” and Ether 12:6  - And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.”are more applicable now than ever before.
The work is tough but it´s worth it.
I love you all!
Until next time!
Elder Carroll


Elder Carroll’s E-mail address:

Snail mail address: (6 lines)  Elder Jeffrey Benjamin Carroll
                                                 Brazil Joao Pessoa Mission
                                                 Rua Deputado Jose Mariz, 515
                                                58042-020 Joao Pessoa – PB 



Thursday, August 20, 2015


August, 17, 2015

HEY EVERYONE, GUESS WHAT????? IM IN BRAZIL!!!!!!!! AHHHHHHH!!!!!! Okay so this is gonna be a long e-mail because I’m including the stuff that happened my last week in the MTC and what's happened since I’ve been in Brazil.
 First, my last week in the MTC. I went to the Provo Temple for the last time for two years, which is sad because it is so important to me, but I know I’ll be back in no time. The temple truly is a beautiful place and I am so grateful for it. President Nelson of the quorum of the Twelve spoke to us tonight for the devotional and it was awesome. He didn´t say anything we couldn´t say, it was very simple. But he spoke with authority and power, and I know everyone in the room was feeling it. I got to do some teaching/spend more time with Elder Bradshaw in my district. This last week and he´s really helped me to be optimistic. He´s really good at the language, is a hard worker, and is a good friend, and I´ve really enjoyed working more closely with him this week. I had my last lessons with my investigators Jose and Manuela and it´s so amazing to see how they´ve progressed from the first time we taught them. Along with that, I said my goodbyes to my teachers, Sister Sandholtz and Brother Belchior. I´m really gonna miss them ,they both taught me so much about how to be the best missionary and best person I ca. It´s awesome how much I know I’ll use what they taught me in the field.
I´m not gonna go into details cause I don´t have time, but the Lord worked another miracle on Sunday. It´s amazing to see what he can do for us. Sunday was a day of goodbyes, and that was really, really difficult. I’ve made so many amazing friends here at the MTC and I´m gonna miss them a lot. But most people I’ll see again at BYU, so it´s okay. It didn´t hit me that I was leaving until I got on the plane for Brazil. I was glad to be travelling with two people I knew, Elder Summers and Sister Stowell, and then we were joined by another missionary, Sister Rammell.
When I got to Brazil, holy cow. Everything is Portuguese and I have no idea what is going on. They had a church person there for me to make sure I knew where to go, then I said my goodbyes to my American friends and I was on my own.  A Group of Elders also going to my mission talked to me a little at the gate and I didn´t understand anything. The accents combined with the speed of natives prove to be very difficult. But I saw one Sister I knew from the Provo MTC, Sister Wheatley, who helped me out a bit.
Then was my flight to Joao Pessoa and the beginning. I met my mission president, and he´s nice. Brazil is a lot different from the US, obviously. Basically there was dinner and orientation and driving around the city and I had no idea what anyone was saying or anything that was going on. This first week has honestly been difficult beyond description. It´s gonna take a lot of faith, patience, trust in the Lord, and hard work until I become the missionary I want to be. My trainer, Elder Hodges, is an American, but he speaks like a native, and he makes me speak Portuguese all the time, which is good but also extremely frustrating. This area is very poor, and I’m actually glad to be living in a different lifestyle then I’m used to, it´s very humbling. The people are great, very nice. So I did the usual, tracting, appointments with investigators and members, street contacting, the whole bit. I can barely contribute, but I give input when I can. We had a baptism on Sunday, the person had already committed before I got here but I’m glad to have been a part of it. Food is good, although my stomach needs to adjust. I’m sorry I am short on details right now, I don’t have much time. But ya, think that´s about it. Very difficult, but I know I’ll be blessed.
Until next week!
Love you all!
Elder Carroll
final week at the MTC with our teacher Sister Sandholtz
final week at the MTC with Brother Belchoir
with Brother Belchoir
2 Carroll boys at the MTC - with my cousin (1st cousin once removed actually) Austin
Elder Carroll made it to Brazil & into his mission's monthly newsletter

Tuesday, August 4, 2015


August 4, 2015

I GOT MY TRAVEL PLANS, I'M GOING TO BRAZIL!!!!!!!! I was so thinking that I was gonna go stateside, but it turns out the Lord has different plans. Yes, I am nervous, but if I've learned one thing since being at the MTC, it's that there is a reason for everything and the Lord always knows more than I do. I feel incredibly blessed to have been at the Provo MTC for the past 5 weeks (plus one more week this upcoming week), being able to be in a familiar area with friends and being close to BYU and being able to speak English and such, but now it's my time to go and serve the people of Brazil. It's an incredible honor and I know with the Lord on my side, I'll be alright.

Okay, my week. I entered the MTC on July 1st and it is now August 4th, which means I've been here over a month! Crazy! The time really does go by fast and you have to make the most of it. I had a couple of rough days in the week where I just wasn't in the best mood and it seemed like everyone was better at Portuguese than me. But it's all about confidence and not comparing yourself to other people, in the mission field and in life. We all learn at a different pace and I'm exactly where the Lord needs me to be with my Portuguese. I have had an incredible amount of support, kindness, and respect from the people in my zone and I am so grateful for that and will use it to motivate me to not be too hard on myself and just work to do my best.

I got a little bit of the “real world” this week, I went with another Elder to the hospital because his companions stitches from his tonsil surgery opened up and he had to have them looked at. It was a little worrisome, but he had a great attitude about it, and he was sitting and studying Portuguese while he was waiting around. If that's not dedication, I don't know what is.

I lost my scriptures case which had not only my quad but also my PMG and a Portuguese vocab book in it, so I was really distraught and unfocused, but I prayed really hard and I was able to find it again, thank goodness! Heavenly Father really does answer prayers if we are humble and sincere, I promise you all that.

Sunday sacrament meeting was great because it was testimony meeting and I always love hearing people's testimonies and bearing my own. A couple of people from the zone did a beautiful acapella rendition of "Nearer My God to Thee" that brought me to tears, and it was just a really good day, much in contrast to earlier that week.

Another group of missionaries left this morning and yesterday, which is sad as always, but they are all gonna do great out in the field.

Well, next time you all hear from me, I'll be in Brazil, so wish me luck! I know I'm doing what I'm supposed to and that Jesus Christ is my Savior.

I'm so grateful for all of my many blessings.

Thank you all for your support, until next time! - Elder Carroll
NH boys reunite - Elders Nimmo (Mozambique) & Carroll (Brazil)

Always look up

Temple time with the new crew

the new crew

more temple time

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Another Week!

                                                                                                              July 28. 2015

Hello Everyone!

So I had another couple of friends come into the MTC! Elder Bates, Elder Sabey, Sister Froisland, Sister Farrer, Sister Frisch, Elder Nelson, and Elder Nimmo who is in my zone. Always awesome seeing familiar faces here at the MTC.

I know I forgot some stuff from last week, so I apologize if any of the is stuff I've already said, but last week when we went to the temple, we got breakfast and temple breakfast is AMAZING. We got it when we went again today, soooo goood.

A bunch of people left are zone last Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and I was sad to see them go, but then we got a whole bunch of new people which was great. I got to work traffic on Wednesday for all the missionaries getting dropped off and it was pretty fun. It was a little sad because seeing all the emotional family members made me a little homesick, but I know I'm here to serve the Lord and I'm right where I should be!

Because one of my teacher's, Sister Sandholtz, was out of town all week, we had Sister De Campos and she was fantastic. Incredibly spiritual, incredibly insightful, just what I needed.

Two of the new Elders moved into our room, Elder Bott and Elder Stewart, they're cool. Although room situation is changing up again. So this morning, two Elders left that were part of a trio so the one Elder left, Elder Ebert, has become another companion of mine! I've had four comps in 4 weeks, craziness! But he's a great guy and I'm happy to have him. To keep it simple, I'm comps with Elder Kunz and Elder summers still during class time, but every other time of the day I'm comps with Elder Ebert. I'm just glad I've liked all the comps I've had so far.

Last night I was able to participate in some blessings for some missionaries leaving, and it was definitely nice and spiritually enriching to be involved in that again. More Portuguese learning, more soccer and volleyball, ya know, the usual.

But something big happened a few days ago. To keep it simple, let me all tell you that we need to be selfless and constantly working to help, care for, and serve others. Life isn't about you; it's about blessing other people’s lives and making the world a better place. This is especially true as a missionary. Time is precious, don't waste it, make every moment worth something, don't hold grudges, and make sure you always let your friends and family know how much you love them. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love all of us and will never give us anything that we can't handle. You are never alone. I hope you all are doing well, keep on pressing forward.

Elder Carroll

Attending the temple on P-Day - Priceless!
with Elder Joseph Nelson

so great to help out The Nelson Family on arrival day