Monday, July 25, 2016

July 25, 2016- week 99 of 100- FINAL email of Elder Matthew Collins from the Brazil Piracicaba Mission!

Minha querida família,

Welp, this is it. My last email to you guys on my mission here in Belo Brasil. I can't even believe that this is actually happening. How fast these two years have passed. I can honestly say that going on a mission was one of the best things I ever done in my life. The experiences, things learned, the people I've met. There is no way to describe how I feel about all of this. I am super happy to be here. I've felt the most happiness and most peace that I have ever felt in my life. My testimony of our Savior has grown so much. I understand the power of conversion and how the Gospel can change people's lives. I've seen it so many times in the lives of my recent converts and others who have been affected by the love of our Heavenly Father and His Beloved Son. 

When I get home, you will see the change that the mission has implied on me. I'm still Matthew, but I'm different. haha You guys'll see. I'm pretty pumped up to see all of you. Well, except John haha.
Also, to end out my mission, I had my last baptism this past Saturday. It was of a girl named Nicoli. It was really special. On Sunday she was confirmed and received the gift of the Holy Ghost. 

To answer mom's questions- The most significant and spiritual thing of the past week was definitely the baptism that we had. 

To prepare myself for the day, I follow the schedule in the missionary manual. The best thing about my current companion is probably that he can draw cartoons really well. haha The last time we laughed together was last night when we were saying good morning to everyone instead of good night haha. 

What do I like about my last area- Anhanguera? Well, I love the people and the Ward. Best Ward that I've passed till now. Seriously. All the members here are super friendly and I get a long with them super well. The investigators are super cool too. There is a couple, that unfortunately I will not be able to attend, that will be getting married and also baptized the next month. There's a lot of people here that are all really cool and will definitely have to keep up with them afterwards. 

On the mission, one of the things that just naturally happens is that you begin to love the people that you serve. I love all of the members here and all the people I teach. I just want the best for them.

Well, have a good week everyone! See you all in little more than a week!


Elder Matthew Collins



This cool family.

Some newbies.

At a stake activity.

 This Cristo statue in our area.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

July 19, 2016- week 98 of 100- Final 2 weeks in Brazil and kite flying!

Hey Family!

Can you believe it? ONLY 2 MORE WEEKS ON MY MISSION!! 

Next week will be my LAST email to you guys on the mish. Then I'll see you guys in person and we will talk all we want about the mission. haha 

So yeah, like I told you last week, I had my last Multizona at Sumaré. Wow, when I got to Sumaré TONS of memories started flooding in. But it was good. 

Also, I don't know how it is with other missions, but here in my mission, the last week, we all participate in a self-sufficiency class at Piracicaba. At the multizona we started the class. It was super trunky. It felt like a support group. lol We all got up and introduced ourselves and what we did before the mission and what we plan to do afterwards. 

I got to fly kites the Monday before last, but here kite flying is different. They fly kites with special lines used to cut the lines of the other kites. Sometimes you can look up into the sky and see 20-30 kites and then one by one, they all start to fall down after being cut. Then you can see everyone on the ground running around trying to get the kites back. It's actually SUPER fun and the skies are awesome during these fights. haha

Anyways, sounds like everyone's having fun over there in Florida. In a little bit I'll be over there too. Well, there's not too much I have to say. I'm trying my best to stay focused on the mission. I gotta give it my all for these last two weeks that I have on the mission.

I did want to know if you guys have a plan for whats gonna happen the day I get back. Also, will I be released at night or in the afternoon? Also, since I'll be getting home in the morning what are we gonna eat for the three meals of the day? I would like to eat at Chik-fil-a for lunch if thats okay with you guys. Just to relive 2 years ago haha. Since it was the last lunch I had in the states, I think it would be cool to eat there. I LOVE CHIK-FIL-A. haha

Well, until next week!


Elder Matthew Collins

A picture from the Multizona. Some peeps from my group.

Multizona pic with President and Sister Bangerter!


Tuesday, July 12, 2016

July 12, 2016- week 97 of 100- only 3 weeks left in Brazil!!!

Hey Guys!

ONLY 3 WEEKS LEFT TILL I GET HOMEEEEEEE. Sorry for the short email last week. To celebrate the completion of our goal for baptisms for the past month, we had a zone P-Day and churrasco. It was awesome. Unfortunately, I didn't take any photos there. I'm kinda sad. 

Anyways, yes we had a meeting with President Bangerter (the next mission president) to get to know him. Half the mission went to the one I went to in Piracicaba. It was super cool to get to know him and Sister Bangerter a little bit better. 

Also, this week now, we will be having a Multizona in Sumaré. This will be my last Multizona, which means I will be bearing my testimony for the last time. And, the cool thing is that my first ever multizona was at Sumaré. So, both my first and last testimonies will be given at the same place. 

So, about the temple recommend. From what I understand, when President Bangerter does my last interview, he's gonna give me a temporary temple recommend, but then when I get back, I'll have to get a regular temple recommend from the Stake President. 

Also, I think it would be cool to go the temple the same day, if that's possible. Yeah, so now you guys also have the flight itinerary. Wow, I'm gonna get home pretty early in the morning. Just tell me what your guys' plan is for the day (like what you wanted to do). Will I be released at night or in the afternoon?

Well, everything is going well for me here in Campinas. This past week was a little hard for me to be able to focus, but I'm trying to do better. We are going to visit this girl, that I mentioned last week, during this week and we'll see what we can do. I think she will be my last baptism on the mission.

The biggest impact of the week? haha the fact that I'll be going home in 3 weeks. I dunno. I'm starting to see planes everywhere I go. haha

Well, I hope everyone has a good week! Till the next!

Elder Collins


My recent convert Karine!
I don't think you guys will get what's so funny with this...

Monday, July 4, 2016

July 4, 2016- weeks 95 and 96 of 100- 4 weeks left in Brazil!

(***Disclaimer- there was no blog post last week because we were on a week long cruise, so two weeks are combined into one today! Enjoy!)

July 4, 2016

Hey Family!

It's me, your son and brother!

Only 4 WEEKS LEFT!!!

So, I don't have much time to write right now because we're gonna be going to a zone churrasco with all the missionaries from my zone. but, real quick- this week I worked super hard. We knocked lots of doors and talked with lots of people and also taught lots of lessons. 

We might have a baptism in a little bit of a girl who is always going to church. we're gonna teach her this week.
Alright, well i gotta now. I'll see if I can get back on later tonight to send photos and respond to the emails. 

Love you all,
Elder Collins

Hey guys! I have a little time now, so I'll send you guys some pics. Here they are:


The chapel here in my area Anhanguera.

My comp Elder Dellon.

Some elders from my Zone.

Falta pouco...

 I forgot that today is the 4th of July until I saw Elder Payne's tie... haha

June 27, 2016

Hello family!

So, this week does not go on the wall for one of the best of the mission. Nossa. I stayed with the Zone Leaders Sunday night, Monday, and Tuesday. Wednesday, we had District Meeting. 

Anyways, on Monday, we had a churrasco at a member's house. It was really good, but then Tuesday morning, I woke up and had to run to the bathroom where I puked out my brains and then had massive diarrhea. haha Not fun. It was like the whole day. Every time I tried to eat something, I threw it back out. UGH. It got better on Wednesday, on so on, but I still have diarrhea. It's not an enjoyable experience, and it certainly is not helping me to want to work. Agh, Satanás! 

Despite these my problems, we were able to work half the week once we got back to our house. 

Anyways, my new companion is Elder Dellon. He's got 3 months on the mission and is from Pernambuco (the northeast of Brasil). He's pretty cool. A little quiet and shy, but he's got lots of potential. There's still lots for me to teach him and help him. 

As for flight itinerary, I still don't know. 

Last transfer, Elder Moss got his itinerary like halfway through the transfer. Just know that I'll be home on August 2nd. 

Also, I don't know when I'll meet the new President. I believe that this week is President Canuto's last week to be here in the mission. I haven't gotten the "Correio do Peixe" today (the weekly newsletter of the mission) so I have no idea of what's going to happen.

Well, I hope you all have a great week whether it be on the cruise or in Florida or wherever!

Elder Collins


Elder Moss' death. 

Our last cheesecake together.

Saying goodbye to these guys. 

Saying goodbye to Moss.

Division with Elder Azevedo.

This guy is my new comp.

Festa Junina at the chapel.

Monday, June 20, 2016

June 20, 2016- week 94 of 100- Last transfer in Brazil until I return home!


So, yes- this is my last transfer here on my Mission in Brasil. This is nuts! I never thought this day would come, but alas here I am. 

The past transfer with Elder Moss was legit. One of my favorites. Now, onto my last transfer. I will be dying here in Anhanguera and will be training a newbie. Well, finishing his training. This should be fun. I was really needing someone new with force and that vigor that new missionaries have. It should be a blast!

Well, not much to say for this past week. We mainly visited members and said goodbye to everyone. It was cool, but also super trunky for me to see Elder Moss die. 

Right now, I'm with the Zone Leaders until later when I'll head back to my house and clean everything up and get ready to go to Piracicaba tomorrow. Unfortunately, this week will be one of those weeks where you guys won't be able to see any photos. I forgot to bring my cord for the camera, but next week you guys will see lots of photos.

Have a great week everyone and talk next week!

Elder Collins

Monday, June 13, 2016

June 13, 2016- week 93 of 100- Transfer week in Brazil!

Hey Family!

Sounds like everyone's having a good time as school ends and summer break is starting for you guys! Although, that's too bad that Sarah fractured her arm. I'm sorry that happened. I hope she gets better. 

Also, I was very happy to hear that John was ordained an Elder in the Melchizedek priesthood.

Well, this week I was super trunky. My companion Elder Moss will be going home next Monday, but he will leave for Piracicaba on Thursday morning. It was a little hard for us to work, but we gave it all, and that resulted in a baptism this past Sunday. We held the baptism of the son of a less active. His name is Nicollas and it was a very special baptism. We've been working with them since the beginning of the transfer, but hard work finally paid off.

We might be able to have one more baptism this upcoming Saturday, but I don't know since I don't know who I'll be staying with from Thursday until transfers.

Well, this email is a short one, but I hope everyone is doing well back home.


Elder Collins


Elder Mossy's going home.

I didn't know you could do this with cats...

June 12th Dia dos namorados #foreveralone

Baptism of Nicollas!

Counting the days! #48days

Monday, June 6, 2016

June 6, 2016- week 92 of 100- Getting soaked in the rain in Brazil!

Hey Guys!

So this past week, as usual, went by incredibly fast. It also rained a lot. So much that we got home soaking wet like 3 days in a row. Although it was fun to run back home in the rain, after a while it gets a little annoying and now our phone isn't working right. The screen doesn't turn on, so we don't know who's calling and we can't call anyone unless we have their number in our planner. That's alright; just another challenge to my mission. 

So, to answer your questions:

1.What has been your biggest challenge this week?
Probably trying to get people to church.

2. What has been your biggest concern?
I think my biggest concern for the past week was that we find new people to teach.

3. What has been your biggest success?
My biggest success for the past week was marking two baptismal dates for this upcoming week.

4. Who has been your favorite person this week? Why?
My favorite person of the week has to be JOHN! Because he turned 18 and I'm so proud of the choices that he is making in his life!

5. What has been your most significant tender mercy?
Significant tender mercy? That we were able to have 5 of our good investigators at church.

6. What are you looking forward to this coming week?
I'm looking forward to working with the two people that are preparing to be baptized.

7. Do you have a goal set for this coming week? Tell me about it.
Yes, two baptisms. Well, we marked a baptism with a girl because she's been going to church for the past few weeks and has decided she wants to be baptized. The other is of a son of a less active who is coming back to church slowly. His wife is also not a member, so we're working with her.

8. Which scripture has had the biggest impact on you this week?
Hmm, Mosiah 18:8-10

Well, I hope everyone has another good week!

Elder Collins

We made cinnamon rolls!

Oh yeah, this guy too.

Zona Hortolândia

That's us soaked.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

May 31, 2016- week 91 of 100- "The death call" in Brazil!

Hello Family!

Haha, don't worry about not being able to email me earlier. 

So, this past week was pretty cool. I had another baptism with the most elect person I've taught on the mission until now. It was incredible to see her turn her life around and change so many things. She was already sharing her testimony to everyone before the 3rd time we went there. 

Also, we see her walk to the park every other night to read the Book of Mormon. Wow. Probably one of the most spiritual baptisms that I've had. I wish I could've hugged her after baptizing her, but I guess that can wait. haha 

Also, I don't know how it is with other missions, but here, when the missionary is on the second to last transfer, he or she receives a phone call so infamously titled "the death call". It's when the secretary calls you to tell you that you will be going home and to ask some information like what airport and what time you want to get home. SUPER TRUNKY. 

Elder Moss just got his itinerary today (is that how you spell that?) and so he knows all the details about when he gets home. Anyways, the date is set- August 1st I will go back home. Next transfer I will be able to tell you exactly when I will get home. 

Well, I'm trying my best to work hard and find more people to bring to church and learn about the Gospel. It's going well; just a few times where we sit down and think about life. The key is to keep yourself occupied, cause then you don't have time to think about home. 

I hope everything is going well for you guys. Have a great week!


Elder Collins


Division with Elder Driggs.



The youth of the ward all like her.

This crazy dude from the ward.

Monday, May 23, 2016

May 23, 2016- week 90 of 100- Only 10 weeks left in Brazil!

Hey Everyone!

Yup, now we're down to 10 weeks on the mission. CRAZY. 

Anyways, this week went by pretty fast. I guess thats what happens when you work hard. Only bad thing is that I got sick about half way through the week, and I'm still recovering. It's been raining pretty often here. And getting cold. 

So, we were able to find and teach lots of new people. We had quite a few people at church, but I was still sad when not everyone who said they were going went. We're still gonna keep working hard. We do have a baptism marked for this week for a girl who is super elect! It's gonna be super cool. 

We've also got lots of other people that we can help be baptized in the next couple of weeks, so this transfer should be pretty fun. I mean, it's pretty fun so far. 

Sometimes it does get a little hard when we get talking about life outside of the mission since my comp will be going home in like 28 days. But, we both have the desire to baptize and work till the end, so we're good. 

We also decided to make cheesecake this past week and that was delicious!

Well, I hope everything's good for you all. Have a great week!

Elder Collins



That's my comp and also...Campinas?

The rest of the post-its.

Monday, May 16, 2016

May 16, 2016- week 89 of 100- A conference with Elder Holland in Brazil!

Hey Guys!

So, this transfer is going pretty well so far. Yeah, I got to know Elder Moss pretty well up in Poços de Caldas. Now we have been reunited again! He's super cool, and yeah he's going home pretty soon. Don't worry, I'm working harder in this transfer than any other. 

Also, it seems as we keep coming across miracles every other day. We found a lot of cool people doing contacts, which a lot of them went to church on Sunday. That made me real happy. 

So, to answer your question, it's been a while since I've been called to help in a physical service project. I think the last time was in Capivari where we were helping to build our Branch President's house. Also, P-Day is usually a day of sleep and relaxation. Nothing too strenuous. My favorite P-Day activity till now, though, would have to be when I went to the Redentor in Poços de Caldas. That was super cool.

Also, speaking about Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, this past Saturday, we had the immense privilege in taking part of a conference in Campinas along with the Campinas mission that Elder Holland attended and spoke in. It was really cool to see him; I've always wanted to meet him. Unfortunately, it was late when we ended, so we didn't get to shake his hand, but he did blow us all a kiss. Haha. 

His words really inspired me. He talked about a lot of things, but one of my favorite things was about the Book of Mormon and how sometimes we neglect the importance of this holy book. He invited us to make a greater effort to help people be converted through the Book of Mormon.

Anyways, I hope you all have another great week!


Elder Collins


Cleaning the baptismal font

Cleaning the font

Arcilia's baptism

Arcilia's baptism

Campinas area

Second to last transfer

Monday, May 9, 2016

May 9, 2016- week 88 of 100- Skype call and new companion in Brazil!

Hey guys!

Thanks for the awesome talk that we had yesterday on Skype! My last Skype call on my mission. Now, onto 2 and a half more months of working hard and bringing souls to Christ!

The transfers were passed, and I will be staying one more transfer here in Anhanguera! Sadly, my companion Elder Andrade is being transferred to Poços de Caldas to be the new District Leader there! Just like I was, almost a year ago. I have to say, he was one of my favorite companions, if not my favorite. 

Now, if you guys remember Elder Moss, from Poços de Caldas, he's coming here to be my companion. He will be dying here this transfer (ending his mission). Hopefully I don't get too trunky with him. haha

Well, I won't say too much as I talked yesterday, but just know that I'm super happy to be here on the mission and that my love from Christ and His Gospel has grown so much. I'm a different person, but I'm a better person.

I wish you all another wonderful week!

Love you all!
Elder Collins

unfortunately, this lan house isn't taking my camera or pen drive, so you'll have to wait till next week... :(

Skype call photos:

Friday, May 6, 2016

May 2, 2016- week 87 of 100- A cold P-day in Anhanguera area in Brazil!

Hey Guys!

Yup, can't wait to talk to you guys for the last time on skype while I'm on my mission. Although, I'll still have to keep using Skype to talk to John...haha So this past week has been COLD. So COLD. Seriously, like the title for your email, we are now entering Autumn. We go to bed every night with sweat pants, socks, and our hoodies. haha In comparison with Italy it's not even that cold here in Campinas, but the wind is killing me. 

I'm loving it here in my new area Anhanguera with my companion Elder Andrade. This week was pretty normal for work. We talked with lots of people, taught lessons, invited people to come unto Christ, and visited lots of members. I think the only things that was different was the sweaters we used every day. haha

So, yes, Mother's Day! I will be getting on about 14h here in Brasil, so what like almost 7pm at night for you guys? I might get on a little late too, as we will be eating lunch at a different member's house and then running to a different house to get on skype. 

Haha, I have 90 sticky notes left on my wall. Actually, something that I started doing a while back was, starting with 138 days left on the mission, I would read one section of the Doctrine and Covenants each day. I'm at Section 48 I believe. 

Well, have another great week! Only 13 more weeks!
Talk soon!

Elder Collins

P.S. My favorite scripture from this week was Alma 34:40-41. We all have difficult times in our lives, but we must have patience. The Lord promises those are patient, that will have their rest.

Monday, April 25, 2016

April 25, 2016- week 86 of 100- Entire mission conference in Piracicaba, Brazil!

Hey Everyone!

WHATT!!! I'M SUPER EXCITED FOR JOHN!! Seriously, I came onto the email and then saw everyone's emails in all caps- READ JOHN'S EMAIL FIRST, and then I knew that John had gotten his mission call. That's so awesome that John will be going to Las Vegas. I never even imagined that John would be going there, but that means he will be going to the MTC in Provo. 

So how is that gonna work out? Is mom gonna fly with him to Utah too? Or will you guys say goodbye at the airport in Orlando? haha Dang it. July 27th is like one week before I get home!!! WHYY??? Well, I'm sure everything will work out for John. Just know that I'm super excited and also he won't have to stay in the MTC for a super long time like I did. Also, packages and letters will be a lot more cheaper to send off. Haha. Also, something that I didn't get to do that he will is preach the gospel in our native tongue. I've only ever gotten to do that twice on the mission and in emails. John is gonna learn so much! Well, only two more weeks till the last time I'll see John until 2018...

Anyways, this week went by super fast for me! On Tuesday, we had interviews with President Canuto for the last time. It was great! President said he was very happy with me and thankful for the work I've done in the mission. On Wednesday, we went to our DL's house to stay the night so that the next day (Thursday) we could get to the Stake Center in Hortolândia and catch a bus that took us to the Multizona of the ENTIRE MISSION. Yup the whole mission was there. This has never happened, and so it was a historic moment. 

There was a lot of people there, and sadly me being one of the oldest didn't recognize half of the missionaries there. All so new! In total, I think it was 53 people who bore their testimonies! There was a lot of people going home! The group going home with President is the biggest group that the mission has ever had. I will be bearing my testimony the next Multizona with the new President- President Bangerter (I believe is his name). He even sent us a video of him and his wife introducing themselves and singing a song. It was great. I'm very excited to meet them in person. 

At the very end of the multizona, President and Sister Canuto gave their last testimonies. It was a very emotional moment. I'm so grateful for the time I've spent here in Brasil with President and Sister Canuto. President Canuto is a wonderful man and has shown everyone a love so great and appreciation so deep for every Elder and Sister that has ever passed here. He has been an example in all things. I will miss him a lot.

Anyways, also on Friday I hit 100 days left. I took 100 post-it notes and put them on the wall so that every day that passes, I take one off. Just a little trunkiness. It still hasn't hit me completely and I still do have a little ways to go.

Unfortunately, the lady that I was talking about did not get baptized last week because of some things, but we're gonna try our best to help her be baptized pretty soon.

Well, I hope all of you have another great week, and thank you dad for the reminder on 14 WEEKS LEFT ON THE MISSION!

Love you all,

Elder Collins

A bunch of goobers.

Me with President and Sister Canuto.

The American gang going home August 1st.

The Multizona

The Multizona

The Multizona

The Multizona

The Multizona

Some of the lovely folks here in Campinas.

The division between Sumaré and Hortolândia.

100 days left...