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, May 29, 2017

Gaia 5/29/17

Aloha Família!

First off, Happy Bday Jonah!!!! 18yrs old man! Parabens!!! Looks like da holoholo was mean! Da beach was looking good!

Élder Wanlass and Élder Kim
Last picture before transfers.
We traded ties.
Second off, life is going good here in Gaia. Transfers went down as smooth as transfers can go. Elder Wanlass went, and Elder Karthigeyan came in, and as always the adventures never stop. First thing me and Elder Karthigeyan did was help the sisters out by jumping thru their 5th story building window....yeah never doing that again, haha. Nothing better to build a relationship than life threatening situations.

Elder Karthigeyan is super cool! So he’s the first missionary from India to serve in Europe. He speaks 13 languages, 11 Indian languages, English, and Português. He’s got about a year on the mission, and actually started his mission here in Gaia. We’ve had a blast working hard here the last few days!

Élder Karthigeyan, Élder Kim's new companion. 
"He is the man!!! I'm learning Hindi phrases
and eating with my hands. It's great. kkk"  
We’ve been working hard, talking to everyone and prioritizing working with the members. On Friday, a member called us and brought us a man she had contacted on the street. We taught him the restoration and he said he’d read and pray, and accepted baptism on the 17th! We showed him the font and he was  happy. Interestingly enough, he’s not from our area...he’s from Gaia 2 ward. But it’s all good though, we’re happy that he’s progressing in the gospel.

Élder Kim and Carlos Braga
There is a member whose name is Carlos Braga. He has a CRAZY conversion story, and suffers from some issues due to a rough past, but when we visited him the other day, he was telling us how it’s hard cause he no more work, so he just stays home. We were like well, you can come out and work with us. So, for two days straight, he walked around with us for a few hours each day. His faith, and commitment are awe inspiring and really touches me. We knocked a door, and I start the contact, and he keeps looking at me, so I’m like Irmão you wanna talk, he’s like yeah. So, he like starts teaching this guy in the door and shares his testimony, getting this guy thinking, then he passes it back to me, and I just ask to come in and he accepts, and we teach him the 1st lesson. Was mean. I love Irmão Carlos Braga!

I know that God lives, and that He loves us. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior. I know that EVERYONE can also know that for themselves thru the Holy Ghost.

Family, I love you guys! Keep up the great work! Stay safe! Jonah, Happy Bday!!!

During transfers, Élder Kim was briefly reunited with
his "son", Élder Dias, who was passing thru on his way to his new area in Covilhã, 
where there is a branch of 12 active people.
"He's already killing it in his new area. I love Élder Dias!"
Élder Dias and his companion found nine people to teach in their first week in Covilhã
and committed one to baptism in two weeks. He is "killing it!"

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Gaia 5/22/2017

(l to r) Elder Kiki, Elder Hammer,
Sister Nance, Sister McNabb,
Elder Wanlass, Elder Kim
Aloha Família

This week was honestly really awesome, and we definitely ended this transfer off well!

We had zone conference this week and it was really good! Presidente talked a lot about the need for us to open our mouth and also, to do the basics. It was really inspiring. Me and Élder Wanlass have been really good at talking to everyone and stuff, but we have definitely been making a more conscious effort since then. During the conference, Presidente asked all those who had used public transportation to get to the conference to stand, and then had all those who didn't contact someone, sit down. I was so grateful for having opened my mouth and contacted a few people, even though I really wasn't feeling it that morning. I will continue to do my best to waiho i ka hilahila ma ka hale and talk to everyone, so that all may have an opportunity at the blessings.

Noite das Culturas
(Cultural Night Activity)
We contacted this guy a few weeks ago and he said he could meet up with us another day, along with some of his friends, but we weren't able to do that until this week. He picked us up in his BMW, takes us to his friend's house, and the house is rich! His friend is this ripped, English, affluent alfa male guy, and he's there with his family and a few other people. So, me and Élder Wanlass, with nine other people, and they're all Seventh Day Adventists. We're thinking it's gonna get nuts. We felt like we were in the lion's den, haha, but, they let us share our message. Alfa male starts to get small kine nuts, but we just redirect everything to the message, and to God, and how they will only know by the Spirit thru their personal efforts. The Spirit was totally there as we taught, and it made me feel so good to know that I really don't have to prove anything. I am but the tool by which the message is shared, and THEY WILL KNOW if they ask. Was cool.

We also had this cool activity called Noite das Culturas, and it was great! We had five investigators there, and a lot of members showed up. Everyone was asked to bring a "cultural" dish and was awesome! We also had a culturally themed jeopardy game and everyone got involved. Also, these two guys we contacted the other day, who make and play the Portuguese bag pipes, gaita, showed up at the end, and performed a small piece for us. Was super dope!

Transfers came in, and half our district is going.... I'm pretty sad. Élder Wanlass has been transferred to Matosinhos and will be serving as one of two new assistants to the presidente. I'm pretty sad to have him leave... I've learned a lot with and from him. I'm super grateful for the opportunity I had to serve with him once more. (He was my companion in the MTC.) I will be staying here in Gaia and will be with Élder Kathegeyan, who's from India, the first Indian missionary ever, from what I've heard. I'm a little nervous and stuff, but I'm excited to go and work.

Celebrating Elder Wanlassʻs Birthday
(fruit punch and sprite drinks)
Also, Élder Nunes is a zone leader! Élder Wanlass turned 21 today and I made him those macadamia pancakes today! We ate all you can eat sushi as a district, and had a ping pong tournament! I really will miss all these guys... I'm grateful for all the opportunities I've been blessed with to meet and know all these cool people, and to learn, grow, and work with them. A vida é boa pa, kkkkk.

Family, I love you guys!!! Sounds like graduation was nuts! Was happy to see all the family together and stuff. Shout out to Grandma Odale and Aunty Kenz! I love you guys!!! Keep up the good work!

Vos amamos!
-Elder Kim

Noite das Culturas
Noite das Culturas

Portuguese Bag Pipes and Dance

Monday, May 15, 2017

Vila Nova de Gaia 05-15-2017

Aloha Família!

Super cool to see you guys, family! Nice to see that you guys are all okay and doing such great work! Also, summer is almost here! Yay!

We had a divisão with the elders from Gaia 2. I went with Élder Souza, who's in his second transfer. He's from Recife, Brasil, and he's super cool. He's got a lot of "real intention" and really wants to be better. It was super invigorating working with him. I felt bad cuz we knocked a lot of doors, and got rejected pretty hard, and then he lost his name tag, but he was a trooper and kept a good attitude. We finished the day good. 

Also, had a division with the assistants to the President. I went with Élder Gabbitas. It was not bad. Had some patience-trying experiences with him, but was cool. I learned a lot about working thru members, using activities. Was good. Also, I forgot how fun 4-Élder houses are, haha. They have one of the few 4-Élder houses, and so was fun to be able to kick it with Élder Gabbitas and others. Also, shout out to Ricardo e Deborah Fernandez who I saw at an activity there! Love those guys! #póvoadevarzim

On Sunday, the sisters brought an Angolan family we found for them. Our ward mission leader stuck up for us and now we are moving forward to be more united as a ward.

I've been learning a lot about the effect I have on other people as a leader. Love needs to always be the motivating factor. The right perspective, meaning, looking at them as children of God with divine potential, is essential, as the way we treat and think about them will influence their desire to do and be better. I know that Jesus Christ is our perfect example and that as we seek to be more like Him, we will become the best versions of ourselves. I know that having, and following good leaders, is essential to our spiritual development. I'm so grateful for the people who I've had in my life, principally my family, who have helped me to become the man I am today.

Once more, family, super nice to see you guys yesterday! Happy Mother's Day mom! Jonah, happy early birthday!!! Fight the good fight, keep the faith! Love you guys!

com amor,
Élder Kim 

A shout-out video from Skype call on Mother's Day

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Gaia 5/8/17

Boa tarde Família!

Elders Kim, Andrade, Whetten, & Wanlass
Well this week was "buckwild". Buckwild is my new favorite word for now, and just describes how our week has been, haha.

We get a call from Bishop to help this Brazilian couple whose moving houses to help them get to the chapel with the few things they have, as a temporary fix. As we explain who we are and what we do, and as we teach them the first lesson, a member randomly walks in and is like "hey I got this friend who wants to know more". I'm like wow, ok, so I look over at Elder Wanlass and I'm like "bro take um right over there and teach um" so we like wrangle these lessons and everyone is taught the boas novas do evangelho (good news of the gospel) haha.

We did a division with the elderes of Bragança, and I went with Elder Whetten who actually replaced me in Coimbra 2 when I left, and we had a great division. He's from Arizona, and is 2m tall! We went and wrecked some doors together hahaha. Nah but, we taught this guy me and Wanlass had contacted and turns out he's a cop! Long story short, we didn't go to jail, he liked the message, and we're going back!

We had stake conference and was really cool to see the conference center fill up! We had a 70 visiting from Spain, who spoke straight Spanish, but went really good. Presidente Amorim was also there. Presidente talked about having eyes of light for everyone, and how the way we treat them and think of them, influences their progress. The 70 spoke about putting the things of God first. Both were good. I'm doing my best to apply those things to my life and be a better missionary and leader.

Also after church we had the opportunity to give the Melchezidek Priesthood to some recent converts of our ward, and it just makes me so grateful for the time I have to serve in Portugal, and really be the hands of God here in these peoples' lives.

Happy to hear that everyone survived pule puka kula! Iona, hoʻomaikaʻi!!!! You are now one of the bros. Also hoʻomaikaʻi with seminary! Seminary is definitely good for you! haha go do it!!! Family, I love you guys! Keep up the great work, and I guess I'll see you guys next week Sunday at 18h my time. I love you guys!

com amor,
Élder Kim

What I got to wake up to this AM
The recyclers dropped by. It is taken very seriously here in Portugal.  
These are community bins where everything is sorted.
The bins are HUGE!! You can fit a lot of stuff in there. They are collecting the glass this morning.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Gaia 5/1/17

Aloha Família!

So yeah this week was pretty crazy. I’m pretty sure I say that every week, but this one was pretty nuts.
Elder Wanless, Sister McNabb, Sister Nance, Elder Kim
setting up for zone conference

We had a zone meeting we ran on quarta-feira (Wednesday). We talked a lot about planning, and how we need to plan in such a way that we "garantee" our success. Basically, how we can do everything in our power to reach the goal, making sure that nothing goes thru the cracks. The meeting was super smooth, and the majority, if not everyone liked it. #VivaGaia

Divisions with the elderes from Vila Real B. They aren’t the district leaders so normally we wouldn’t do a division with them, but they had some stuff to do the next day in Porto, so they stayed with us. Was nice to have 2 duplas (sets of missionaries) working in our area. I went with Elder Hilton, who was trained by Elder Wanlass, and we had a great time working hard.
Our zone conference 

Our activity about the tree of life. We based our activity around the tree of life dream, and we had like 35 people there, including some of our investigators. We read the dream, as described in the Book of Mormon, then one by one everyone went thru a tree of life replication we made, in the dark and stuff, ending at the tree of life, while those who waited watched some Mormon messages (videos). After we read the explanations of the symbolisms and stuff, was really good. The Spirit was strong during the whole thing, and many thanked us for the activity after saying tat it was great. Some even cried during the activity. I was very happy with how it turned out.

The sisteres baptism that turned into a noite de cinema (movie night). Sadly the sisters baptism was supposed to happen this past Saturday, but in the end, last minute, it couldn’t happen.... Except we still had people coming to it!!! So, we like put together a movie night thing and we watched “17 Miracles”, and everyone who came loved it!!! God is good!!! 

I know that it is because of Him that we can accomplish all that we accomplish. He guides us, He prepares the way, we are but tools in His hands.

Paintball today. Yeah so the Matosinhos district had planned to do paintball but they needed two more people to play with them to get the deal they wanted, so they called us!!! haha. Never played before in my life, so got demolished the first few games, but by the end was doing better, doing those baseball slides to save myself, and take some people out while I did. #getwrecked #eatpaint #iatepaint kkkkk (side note: “kkkkk” is Portuguese shorthand for “hahahahaha”)

Anyway, that’s about it for this week. Sounds like everyone’s doing pretty good. Have a good Kaʻi Moʻokūʻauhau today!!! Stay safe!!! Boa semana de graduação para vocês (Have a good graduation week)!! I love you guys and keep up the great work!!!

Com amor,
Elder Kim

My Birthday Package! Yay!
ps. I did get the package, and I have been wearing the ties. Thank you, sooooo much!!!

Elder Kim, Elder Hilton, Elder Mireless, Elder Hammer
Planning to "garantee"success

Ready for action
Elder Kim

Ready for fun times

"Bring it on!"