The city of Santarém is situated on a plateau, located on the right bank of the Tagus River, 65 km (40 miles) northeast of Lisbon. The economy of the city remains mainly dedicated to the production of agricultural goods.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Aveiro 4/25/2016

Olá minha família!

Hope you guys have all been well and working hard in our rainy town of Hilo. I won’t be able to email everyone today because today’s a holiday (Revolução dos Cravos) and all the places we’d normally go to to write, are closed, and so we’re all kinda sharing the computer I’m on right now to write our families.

I did my first thing of divisions (“splits”) this week with the Zone Leaders! It was awesome! Elder Meza went to Coimbra with Elder Garsia, and Elder Reed came here to do divisions with me. I was in charge all day and that was kinda weird. We had nobody marked to visit that day so we just spent that day walking around doing contacts, knocking doors, and passing people. Sadly, because it was a Friday, everyone was travelling home and stuff and was super busy. It was a blast though!

We’ve also been teaching our mark, Ana. She is sooo elect! She was able to make it to church, and everyone just loved her up, and she loved it!!! She said she really liked the classes. I’m soo happy! She hasn’t chosen yet though, whether she wants to be baptized in the ocean, the river, or in the baptismal font in Coimbra, since we don’t have one here in Aveiro. We will continue to work hard with her so that she will be baptized on the 7th of May.

A cool experience I had at church was that the other dupla of elders, Elder Gabbitas and Elder Teixeira, brought one of their investigators who is Russian. He only speaks Russian, and some English. I had the opportunity to mahele olelo for him, and explain some stuff to him during our priesthood session. He really liked it! Also, he had google translate on his phone and he’d write stuff in Russian and it’d translate to English for me and vice versa. It was soo cool! I just thought that technology, when used in the right way, is such an awesome tool and can definitely be a tool that we can share the Gospel!

Another cool thought I had was that I will never take the ability to communicate with others for granted again. I was thinking how awesome it is that we can communicate with others, and then I thought how awesome it is that we can communicate with our Father in Heaven. Thru prayer we have the opportunity to communicate with Him!!!! Isn’t that awesome!!!!????

As far as the language goes, I’m improving. I’m understanding a lot better what people are saying, can speak more comfortably, and reading is getting pretty easy. I understood everything on that attachment you sent me from Aunty Marta. È muito fixe!!!!

The weather has been getting hotter! I’m pretty happy about that. I feel like it’s been gloomy my whole mission, since I started in the winter, but the sun’s been coming out! Halelujah! I might even be little bit sunburn haha. O ia ka pilikia me ka ilikea haha.

I gotta get off now so my companion can write his family. Please send my love to Vaea, Kawena, Brandon, Kaiawe, and everyone! Sorry I couldn’t write everyone this week. I’ll try to respond next week. I’ll send pics next week! Os amo!!!! Ficam fixe!

Com amor,
Elder Kim

Revolução dos Cravos, Carnation Revolution, was initially a military coup in Lisbon, Portugal, on 25 April 1974 which overthrew the regime of the Estado Novo, the corporatist authoritarian regime. The revolution started as a military coup organized by the Armed Forces Movement, composed of military officers who opposed the regime, but the movement was soon coupled with an unanticipated and popular campaign of civil resistance. This movement would lead to the fall of the Estado Novo and the withdrawal of Portugal from its African colonies and East Timor. 

The name Carnation Revolution comes from the fact that almost no shots were fired and when the population took to the streets to celebrate the end of the dictatorship and war in the colonies, carnations were put into the muzzles of rifles and on the uniforms of the army men. In Portugal, the 25th of April is a national holiday, known as Freedom DayDia da Liberdade), to celebrate the event.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Aveiro 4-18-2016

Olá minha família!!!! Como estão?!

Thanks for wishing me a happy birthday family!! I know I couldn’t be there in person, but I could definitely feel your love here in Aveiro. It’s pretty crazy for me to think that I turned 19 yrs. old this past Thursday. I feel like my 18th birthday in Hilo was just the other week or something, haha. People were asking how I felt, and I was like, I feel normal. In many ways I don’t feel 19 yet, but in many ways, I feel older than 19. I mean a “normal” 19-yr-old isn’t exactly calling people to repentance that’s why, haha. 

This week has been a great week. Heavenly Father has definitely been helping us out. For my birthday me and Elder Meza marked this Portuguesa, Ana, to be baptized on the 7th of May!!! I’m sooo stoked!!! We only found her a few days earlier too!!! She’s been reading and praying and everything. Sadly, she couldn’t make it to church on Sunday cuz she wasn’t able to get out of work, but she is working on making it possible. We're sooo happy for her!

Yesterday we were knocking doors, and Elder Meza thought it’d be a good idea to pass by this Brazilian couple, Fernande and Flavia, we had found a few weeks ago. We had been trying to teach them for the past few weeks, but they were never home. We had marked them to come today, so I was like hmmm?! But we went anyway, and they were home!!! We were able to teach a great first lesson, left them with a Book of Mormon, with a promise to come back. I guess Flavia had school finals and stuff this week so today definitely wouldn’t have worked out. I’m soo grateful we passed by. It was sooo humbling. We plan to pass by later this week. 

This whole week has kinda been like that. We’ve been finding these really awesome people. We’ve been able to teach and find all these people we’ve been trying to teach since we got here. It’s just been awesome! I’m sooooo grateful to God for His help, because we definitely can’t do it if He’s not helping us. I’m glad that we continued to work hard during these last few rough weeks, so that we can qualify for, and see the blessings he has in store for us. Sometimes it’s just hard to see the big picture when the going’s rough. 

Grandpa asked about how the church is organized here in Aveiro. Well, we do have a chapel, but it’s 45mins away from where we live by foot. It’s definitely a challenge to get investigators to church, let alone members. I really don’t know why it’s soo far away. Word on the street though is that were supposed to get a new place sometime in the near future, but at the same time, that’s been the word on the street for a while now. There’s about 50-60 people who come every week to church. We’re considered a ward. I guess it is one compared to some of the braches, which only have like, 7 people, basically a bishop and his family. I’m sooo grateful to have the opportunity to work with this ward! Our area is super big too!!!!

I was just thinking about Elder Miyasaki/Kaiawe the other day, how he should be home soon. It’s sooo good to hear that he came home safe and had a great mission!!!! I didn’t know him that well really, but I really look up to him for serving a full time mission and being awesome. I wish I coulda heard his homecoming talk!!!!! I’m also stoked to hear that ʻOhu Ishibashi got his call!!!!!!!! I’m soooo excited for him!!!!!!!!! 

I just want to express how grateful I am to my Heavenly Father for helping me reach my potential as a person these last 19 years. I’m soo grateful to my parents for having patience with me and helping me follow the path God has prepared for me. I’m soo grateful to the rest of my family and friends who have played with me, taught me, laughed with me, and cried with me. It’s been great. It’s amazing to see the growth in myself, and humbling to see how much I have to grow. I know that we all have a divine potential and thru following the gospel of Christ and using the atonement in our lives daily, and with Gods help, we can achieve it.

I love you guys!!! Thank you again for everything!

com amor,
Elder Kim

*Birthday Napoleans, compliments of Elder Meza.

Birthday tights from my house mates: From left to right: Me, Elder Meza, Elder Teixeira, and Elder Gabbitas. Elder Meza started it all cuz that’s what he wore to stay warm under his pants. So Elder Gabbitas started wearing um too. When Elder Teixeira came in, he was always cold, so he bought some too. I was the only one without, but they got me a pair for my birthday. Haha

I made some birthday brownies for everyone to share. (Our apartment is fairly modern.)

Street art: tiled/mosaic walls on the walk to the chapel in Coimbra about 40-45 mins walking distance.

*At the train station. The public transportation here is really good. The bus system is on time, and clean.

*From the bottom: Elder Meza, Elder Gabbitas, and Elder Texeira at a park near the chapel in Coimbra. We go every Tuesday for District meetings.

*Me, sitting with João De Deus, 1830-1896, (Poeta E Pedagogo) one of the greatest Portuguese poets of his generation, at the park near the chapel. 

Sporting a fresh haircut, with Elder Meza, Elder Gabbitas, and Elder Texeira at the local community center, where we email our families on Mondays.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

April 11, 2016 Aveiro

Olá minha família!!!!

I feel like its hardly been any time at all! It’s been an interesting week here in Aveiro.

Last Tuesday we had an interesting District Meeting. We, as a district, decided that 20 would be our goal for the number of baptisms this transfer. At first it was 14, but after deliberation and prayer, we decided on 20. It’s a very lofty goal, but we felt good with that number, and so we intend to make it happen. I didn’t realize how lofty it was until the other districts in our zone showed that their goals were 6 and 9 haha. I know that with the Spirit we can do it though! With this goal in mind we’ve been working really hard. Sadly, though, most of our plans have been falling thru. People just haven’t been available, and or just cancel. It’s been pretty frustrating, especially because we’re really working hard, and trying to be perfectly obedient.

The other day we were passing a potential investigators home, only to find they weren’t there. So we started knocking doors. We end up catching this lady as she enters one of the apartment buildings, and we start talking to her. I guess they were moving or something from one floor to another or something, and we asked her if we could help. She said yes and let us in. We end up meeting her family, her husband and son, and we help them move some furniture and boxes around the house and up the stairs. It was nice to do some service for once. Turns out a different pair of elders had helped them yesterday in a different part of Portugal. We were like what?! Then we’re like, ʻhere we’ll leave this Book of Mormon with you’, and they’re like ʻoh, we have one’. They take us downstairs and show us this copy of a Portuguese Book of Mormon from like the 60’s! Super cool! We end up teaching them the first lesson, inviting them to read and pray about the book, and ask if we can come back to which they said we could. Was super cool!

We also taught this Brazilian family. A dad, mom, and their two sons. One is 8, the other is 4. We had already taught the first lesson to them, so we taught the second lesson, the plan of salvation, and it was awesome!!! We had a member present too, who happens to be the primary president, which made it really awesome. I have high hopes for them!!!

RULANDA HAS BEEN CONFIRMED!!!! I’M SOOOOOOO RELIEVED!!!!!! It was a long time coming but it’s finally happened! We were able to teach her a few times this week, and I gave her a blessing on Friday, (my first blessing in Portuguese). She didn’t get stuck in the elevator, and she showed up to church. So awesome! We kinda lost her again right before church, but we found her again and she now has the gift of the Holy Ghost! Official member of A Igreja de Jesus Cristo dos Santos dos Últimos Dias!!!!

I made shoyu chicken this week. Turned out really good! I don’t think it was as good as mom’s one though hahaha. The others really liked it. Ima make it again this week too.

Weather has been somewhat turbulent. Wind has just been gusting with the rain pouring every other day. We even had lightning and thunder yesterday.

We also had my first Zone Conference in Porto this week. It was pretty good! What was cool is that I was following pretty closely what was being said. I'd say about 70-75% at the beginning, but about 60-65% towards the end, just because I was getting tired and stuff and it’s harder to concentrate. (We have to catch the train to district meeting every week, which is an hour south, and then we caught the train to zone meeting, which was about an hour north. We sat next to this drunk guy on the train who we talked to about the gospel. He was cursing and stuff, and he was soooo busss hahaha. The public transportation here is really good. The bus system is on time, and clean. The trains are also cool.) I had my first interview with President Amorim, the mission president, which was kinda intimidating, but I really liked it. I love him, respect him, and sustain him.

I’ve been doing well! Me and Elder Meza are doing well, working hard. The new elder, Elder Teixeira, is really cool! I feel like my Portuguese is getting better cuz he’s in the house. The other day, we were knocking doors, and we found this lady. We were talking to her, and she said we could come back another day, and then right before we left she’s like: ‘you (Elder Meza) have a Brazilian accent, but you (me) you don’t have an accent’. I was sooo proud! As far as what people think I am, most people automatically know I’m American, I mean orange hair is pretty different from the normal brown and black of Portugal. One person guessed I was German the other day though haha.

I had some scriptures I thought you might like: 2 Néfi 2:24, Doutrina e Convênios 78:7, and Alma 29:14. Happy you guys liked that Tongue of Angels talk by Elder Holland.

Well family, I love you!!!! Eu os amo!!! Ficam seguro (Be safe)! Ficam fixe (Stay cool)!

Com amor (With love),
Elder Kim

P.S. I just bought a 16gb media card but it doesn’t seem to be working right now. I’ll try figure it out this week though. Hopefully next week I’ll have pictures for you!