The Brubaker Family

The Brubaker Family

President Brubaker and I are excited to be here as the Mission President and companion of the Belgium Brussels Netherlands Mission! We love your sons and daughters, and feel to thank you for the wonderful missionaries you have raised! This is a very unique mission. Our mission includes two countries, and five languages, not including many dialects spoken in the Netherlands. The missionaries are teaching many people from all around the globe. With the help of the Spirit, the missionaries are finding those who have been prepared to receive the Gospel. This is truly the best mission in the world, and we are honored to be a part of it. We will try and take good care of your sons and daughters. We love them so much already!

We have 5 children and 11 wonderful grand children. We have so much fun together! We are grateful for the support they have given us as we prepared to leave for three years. Our home is in Salt Lake City, Utah. We have raised our family in the Millcreek Holladay area. We enjoy many activities together. We are happiest when we are hiking in Southern Utah, cross-country skiing into our rustic cabin in the Uintahs, enjoying a good game of Train or Settlers of Catan, or just being together and sharing a meal with each other. We love our family so much!!!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Logistical Puzzle?!?

What is the most efficient, cost effective, quickest way to transport 90 missionaries from Belgium and Holland to the very southernmost city of our mission by 9:00 in the morning, and have them return home in time for companionship planning by 9:00 pm? A little challenging?
Not for Elder Wells, Elder Relitz and Elder Tibbetts!

We are so excited to have Elder and Sister Ballard, Elder and Sister Caussé, and Elder Rasband
come to Brussels on the 6-9 of September for a Mission Conference.

Train, bus, metro, car, bicycle.........somehow it will all work out!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Kortrijk -Friends Galore!

We had the privilege of visiting the branch in Kortrijk Belgium on Sunday. President Angelo and Sister Candace Le Monde's son is the newest member of the branch. The branch president received special permission to include the baptism of his oldest son in the sacrament meeting program. He invited his friends, neighbors, and work associates to come and participate in this important day in the life of Absalom. There were over 40 friends and associates there to experience an LDS sacrament meeting and the baptism of Absalom. I think this family has caught the vision and understand the importance of sharing the Gospel with EVERYONE!

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Center For Young Adults is Flourishing in Rotterdam

Elder and Sister Langeveld, a senior missionary couple, serve as the Outreach Couple for the Rotterdam Center. They find great joy in their service and association with the Jovos. They plan, shop, cook, clean, hug, listen, support, counsel, laugh, encourage, love, smile, give rides, and do whatever helps the young people have a great time at the Center. On Sundays, they visit the various wards and a branch in the Stake to support the Jovos and their families. Some young people are students living away from their families and need extra TLC. Our young people come from six continents: Asia, Africa, Australia, North and South America, and Europe.

Centers for Young Adults Training Session

President Brubaker and I met with the missionaries that are helping with the Centers For Young Adults in our mission. We have six Centers for Young Adults in Belgium and the Netherlands. The missionaries learned the most effective ways to encourage young adults to invite their friends to discover the Gospel by bringing their friends to the center.
With the help of these wonderful senior couples in our mission, the Centers for Young Adults are a powerful tool in bringing young adults together to learn about the Gospel and associate with others who share their same values. The missionaries are doubly blessed as they work with and learn from our blessed senior couples!

We met in Rotterdam south Chapel. Rotterdam was heavily bombed during World War II. It is a very modern city, and has it's own Eiffel Tower! (Erasmus Bridge).

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Bernard Finally Finds the True Gospel of Jesus Christ

Bernard Lawson - the Hague -

August 21, 2010

Missionaries came in contact with Bernard about two months ago at the baptism of Brigitte Akon. Because of the special Spirit that he felt at the baptism, he wanted to meet with the missionaries. Bernard has always believed in God and Jesus Christ. He is 53 and comes from Togo. His wife passed away many years ago, leaving him and his six children behind. All of his children live in Togo now. He has always hoped that he would be able to be united with his family again. When
he told us at his first appointment that he had already been baptized six times, we knew that he had been, and still was, searching for the church of Jesus Christ. In a matter of six weeks Bernard prepared himself to be baptized on August 21, 2010, making a commitment to keep all of the commandments before they were extended. He loves reading the Book of Mormon and made it to the middle of the book of Alma before his baptism. Although his mother language is French, he was
able to understand the things he was taught in English and Dutch through the power of the Spirit. He is so happy to finally be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints because he knows that it really is the true church that was restored through the prophet Joseph Smith. Because of the joy he is experiencing, he is actively doing missionary work and inviting his friends to learn more about the church. He finds peace in knowing that one day, he will be reunited with his wife and children. (Written by Zuster Sharp)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Arnhem is Blessed with Baptisms

Wioletha Fuh and Shem Nyamitta – August 2010

Shem Nyamitta investigated the church about a year ago with his sister Beatrice. Beatrice was baptized in January, but Shem wasn’t because he had problems overcoming his problems with the Word of Wisdom. The elders stopped going by and about 6 months went by before we met him again. The whole time, however, he continued coming to church with his sister. We met him for the first time at the baptism of Beatrice’s two children, Patience and Stuart. We made an appointment and when we came by he told us that he was determined to overcome his addiction by the end of the year. As he continued making and keeping commitments though, the process went a lot faster than he expected. He was clean from addiction two weeks before the date that he set and baptism came soon afterwards. He is now clean from the burdens that used to drag him down and he always tells us that he has found more happiness than he could ever imagine.

Wioletha Fuh married a member of the church when she was in Poland and that is when her investigation of the church began. She was taught there for a time until her and her husband moved to Nijmegen. Although she cannot speak Dutch or English, the Lord had a plan to teach her the gospel in Nijmegen. With the help of a Polish member, Sis. Kleftowski, and several ward missionaries, she was taught the lessons and prepared for baptism. She was baptized by her husband, with their young child watching. This young family is now committed to living the gospel together and being sealed in the temple in the near future. (Written by Elder Marshall)

Angela is Baptized in Deventer

Angela - Wu Yujian – August 2010

She came with a Former Investigator to a baptism about 4-5 months ago or something. Then she investigated a little but we lost contact. We ran into her again and we taught her every now and then but she was really busy with school and finals etc. After that was done vacation hit. Ray who had just gotten baptized testified about how happy he was that he got baptized to her (in Chinese). Then she really started investigating. Then during institute we watched the movie "Together Forever". This was her first real big spiritual experience. Ever since then we haven't had any problem teaching her and she knew what she wanted. She was nervous for her baptism and it was pushed back a little because of it but in the end she said it was the best day of her life. It was like she was having a great dream all day.

(Written by Elder DeBruijn)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Do We Have To Say Good-Bye?

We were sad to have to say good-bye to these fine valiant missionaries! They will truly be missed! It will be hard to fill their shoes!!! President Brubaker spent the day interviewing each missionary for the last time. He looks forward to this special time he has with each missionary before they depart for home.

Sister Ekstrom, Elder Rayfield, Elder Pinnock, and Elder Bell took a part of our heart with them. Oh, how we love these missionaries! Each of them contributed so much to our mission as they loved the people of Belgium and Holland, and were instrumental in bringing many elect souls to the waters of baptism.

One last meal in the mission home.
Missionaries enjoy one last moment together before saying good-bye.

Elder Pinnock is re-united with his parents.
Elder Pinnock and Elder
Relitz take a few moments to write in each other's journals

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Andy is Baptized in Antwerp

Andy Thomas – August 14, 2010, Antwerp, Belgium

Andy is a friend of Joseph and Grace Tunde (members of the Antwerpen ward). We met Andy at a zone soccer activity in Antwerpen because Joseph invited Andy to come. Andy comes from Belgium and is 21 years old. He studied the Muslim religion for 3 years but did not find what he was looking for. Then he met Joseph, learned about our church and was very interested. Three days after the soccer activity, Joseph gave us a call late at night and told us Andy wanted to talk with us. Andy asked to learn about the church. After 5 weeks of learning and applying the Gospel, Andy had gained a firm testimony. Andy even started his own scripture marking system in the Book of Mormon as he read 3 Nephi 11-27. He knew it was true and wanted to be baptized. On the 14th of August, he was baptized by Joseph and was so joyful. He is ready to take the journey and is excited to share the gospel with others. Andy’s spirit will bless many people. Just one of a kind . . .

(Elder Wells and Elder Relitz)

Joseph is Baptized in Antwerp

Joseph Mendy – August 2010

Joseph Mendy’s baptismal story by Zusters Fritz and Holbein.

Joseph Mendy is our brother from the Gambia, “The Smiling Coast of Africa.” We met him through an investigator, Bakary, whom we found during a consecrated hour, but wasn’t making much progress. At what we planned would be our last appointment with Bakary, Joseph came along to the lesson and practically taught his friend about the atonement of Jesus Christ. It was immediately obvious to us that Joseph was elect and needed to learn about the restored gospel. Throughout the next following weeks, we taught him in a waiting area in the central train station. It was wonderful to see his progress as he truly went to the Lord in prayer and took the time to read the scriptures and gain a testimony. He is a perfect example of someone who already had strong faith-and we didn’t take anything from what he already believed, but only added more. Joseph is solid in his testimony and will continue to make progress as a new member here in Antwerpen.

An Unforgettable Moment in Zoetermeer

Renco, Marissa, and Amere van Geel – August 2010

(Written by Elder Bell) Probably the most memorable moment of my mission is an amazing miracle that happened in Zoetermeer on my last transfer. The day before I was transferred to the city my companion, Elder Bastian, and Elder Weatherston, his companion at the time, received a call from a member family saying that they had a family of five for us to teach. Of course, we were both very excited, but we didn’t realize what a miracle the Lord really had in store. The first lesson we could see how much this family, the Van Geels, had been prepared by the Lord. They had just barely gotten kicked out of their house because of debts incurred by paying for their daughter’s 8-month stay in the ICU. Ray, the father, said that a few days before we had met them, he and his wife, Marissa, had had a huge fight and he had stormed out of the house afterwards, fuming. At the time he prayed and told God that he couldn’t do it alone anymore and needed help. A few days later they got in contact with the member family, the Tetteros and they said that they felt that she had something that could help.

We set a baptismal date with them the first appointment for six weeks away. It was amazing how quickly the Spirit gave them witness of the truthfulness of the gospel. They were willing to give up smoking and anything else necessary to achieve their goal. The members grew closer to them and so did we. We looked forward to visiting them every time. One memorable Sunday was when Ray got up and bore his testimony that he knew that he had found the way back to God and Jesus Christ. Finally the day came for their baptism and they shone with joy. It was truly a day I’ll never forget.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Zone Conference in Leiden

We love Zone Conference! Our first day was spent in Leiden with the Antwerp and Den Hague Zones. Missionaries enjoy practicing with one another. It gives the missionaries the opportunity to share and grow from unique experiences that each missionary has. Every city has it's own unique challenges and blessings. Enjoy the gallery of photos.

Thursday, August 12, 2010


Elder Bair, Elder Brownell, Elder Alexander, and Elder Garrett enjoy a P-Day together at Kinder Dijk.

Kinderdijk is the only place in the world where you can find so many windmills concentrated on such a short area. There are 19 windmills, one dating back to 1521. There is so much history here. Windmills are an integral part of the history of Holland. Kinderdijk is the final station of the water of the Alblasserwaard, an area that is approximately 10 by 20 miles wide, before the river Lek takes it to the sea. And even today we still need to dispose the water which comes from rain, but since the 1950's the function of the windmills has been taken over by the pumping station which is one of the largest in the world.

Zone Conference-Utrecht

Our second day of Zone Conferences were held in Utrecht, the Netherlands. Our Belgium Netherlands missionaries are learning what it means when President Brubaker say, "Practice Makes Perfect." A good part of the time was doing role plays with different companionships. The missionaries learn so much from each other. Enjoy the photos of our wonderful day with the best missionaries in the world. They just get better and better!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A Day in the Life of a Missionary

Today was a day I will never forget! I found out first hand what the day of the life of a missionary is like.
I drove to Antwerp and met Sister Holbein and Sister Sharp (exchanges today) and then we went on public
transportation to the Centrum Train Station. There we met an investigator for his first lesson. He is from Africa,
and seems so prepared. He loves the Bible and reads it all the time. He was a little hesitant at first to receive the Book of Mormon, but after reading Moroni 10:4-5 with him , he was excited to start reading it. He is very prepared to receive the Gospel.
Then we got back on the train, and went to Julie’s house. Julie is a member of the Antwerp Ward.
She loves to to go with the missionaries to share her testimony with the investigator.
She is from the Congo, and has a heart of gold!

This is one of the most beautiful paintings I have seen. It was a gift to Julie from her Belgian grandmother.
"The field is white already to harvest."
Julie and I felt like long lost friends after just spending a few hours together!
After leaving Julie's apartment. Sister Holbein saw the train approaching. She took off running to catch the train! Sister Sharp and I ran as fast as our legs would go, but still couldn't catch up with her! (I think she was a long distance runner in her former life!) She held the train for us! Back to Central Station to meet Joseph. Joseph is getting baptized on Saturday, and we escorted him to the church for his baptismal interview with Elder Owens. Oh, my goodness! He is so excited about the church, and can't wait for Saturday! He is from Gambia, and is already sharing the Gospel with his friends! Back on the train. We raced to get the sisters home on time! I hated to see this day end! I love spending time with our sister missionaries! They are about as perfect as they come!

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Franquelina Is Baptized

Franquelina Solignier – August 7,2010

Den Bosch, the Netherlands

Franquelina Solignier was a member referral, and is the older sister of a member. She moved here a few months ago from Spain, and after reading through the whole Gospel Principles book, she told us that she had the desire to be baptized. Because Franquelina speaks only Spanish, we relied heavily on our joint-teaches through the teaching process. From the very first lesson, Franquelina was committed to follow Jesus Christ, and we were able to use the Baptismal Calendar from step one to help her have the vision of Baptism and Confirmation. With this end goal in mind, we worked through all the lessons, and after teaching her for just over a month, she entered onto the path towards Eternal Life through the gate of Baptism.

Gracias is Baptized in Kortrijk

Gracias Reinhard – August 7, 2010

Kortrijk, Belgium

She is a daughter of a convert who is from Togo. Gracias was brought up as a Christian by her grand parents. Until 5 months ago she was not able to come to the church with her mother. In the beginning she only could come once or twice a month but then she started coming regularly. We started teaching her after church because she and her family live in Ieper; it’s far. She is very clever. Dutch is not her first language so we taught her in English and then her mother would translate it into French. She did a great job in doing her commitments. She was very diligent. She prayed about the Book of Mormon and after the 4th time she felt the Spirit and she knew it was from God. She was committed to be baptized and did a great job. She has a good understanding of the gospel and she knows that this is the true church of God. She made friends also with the other youth of the church and she is learning Dutch very quickly.

Elder van Doesburg and Elder Johnson; Kortrijk