Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Leaving for the Brazil CTM

Mom was just too excited for Caleb, she couldn't cry.
Many of his friends were able to come see him off.
Thanks to Brother and Sister Barrus & The Peterson family and the banker at Chase in Chicago across from the Secretary of State. Their experience and help were invaluable to Caleb getting his visa in time to go to the CTM.


  1. We came across your blog while searching for other Piracicaba missionaries. So happy to see that your elder got his visa in time! Our son has also been called to the Piracicaba mission and leaves in February. Do you have tips you could share on the visa process? He is going through the Chicago consulate.

  2. The key seems to be in getting the notary right and having no mistakes on the paperwork. Illinois is very particular about the wording for notarization and in order to get the apostille (authentification of the notary), the wording has to be just right. The wording on the forms I was sent to copy from SLC for the DL and the Passport copies was missing a phrase & mine were rejected. Fortunately chase bank was a block away and I was able to get a bank notary (free if you bank there) to retype the form with the missing phrase & recopy the passport page (just needed the front since that has the wording on it) and the DL. If she had just added the missing phrase and restamped it, it would have been rejected. Brazil doesn't like multiple stamps or corrections. It has to look like it was right the first time. The police letter I had notarized at the police and it was missing several phrases. However when I called the notary she had me right it in since the information she had notarized had not changed so that worked out. The best way is to find a notary (banks seem to be good most of the time & free) that is a stickler on the wording and make sure that everything is worded right the first time. The rejections from the apostille tend to be wording rather than expired notaries. If you are near Chicago & want to make the trip, the apostille office is at 17 N State St. ste 1030 (the documents I got had it up on Randolph at the Secretary of State main offices but it has moved). If they haven't changed the paperwork from SLC, I would find out from a notary what it should say (each type of document/notarization needs its own specific wording) and retype it with the right information first. Also talk to the notary about the copying. Are they certifying it is a correct copy of the document or that they copied a correct copy...that makes a difference. There is a website for Illinois notaries somewhere that has the wording. If I find it again I will post it, but the easiest would probably to ask your notary. They should have a booklet or some guide that shows what wording is required in what situation. Or you can get it from the SOS office at 17 N State #1030.

    For the priesthood and seminary documents, you don't have to have the notarization on the same document, it can be a cover sheet stapled to the document with the correct wording on it.

    Long story short. Get the wording right. Take it personally to Chicago if possible. Any corrections do from scratch so there are no errors or corrections on the paperwork. Do it as soon as possible. Caleb's took a 2-3 months.

    2 girls from our stake were rejected and SLC sent them their paperwork and had them go directly to the Brazil consulate in Chicago and both got their visas. I think they were a test case. If things get close, you can always ask SLC. I know they are very careful of their relationship with the Brazil consul so would not do it without their authorization.

  3. Thank you so much! I think we are on the right track. We are hoping to get it right the first time and this will help us a lot!