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, June 26, 2017

Gaia 6/25/17

Aloha Família!
It was suuper hot so Élder Karthigeyan and I were joking
 that we'd start proselyting like this, or in shorts, haha. 
Irmão Carlos Braga took the pict for us.

We were blessed this week and it cooled off small kine.

We "re-found" Carlos Peixoto on the street! He was the guy we marked for baptism, but then had to pass to the other elders. He had stopped progressing, and had given everything back. He didn't wanna hear anything more, but we were able to get him to take back the Book of Mormon, get him marked for baptism, and re-made the plans for his baptism! Was super cool cuz we hadn't planned to be in that part of town, but after a suggestion from the sisters about passing a refferal they had given us, we felt good about it. We went and he was there! Soo grateful for the opportunities we have to serve as tools in God's hands.

We were able to do service for this young couple of our ward. We helped them move! Sadly, I didn't take pics....
The Stake Presidente's daughter with her plastic
hammer. Some of the kids in the background
also have hammers.
 So, this past week we had our Festa de São João Festa for the ward! Festa de São João is a catholic holiday that celebrates Saint John the Baptist, but really, it's just an excuse for people to get together and party haha. Grilled sardines and broa, a type of bread, are traditional foods for this holiday. Also, everyone walks around with plastic hammers and hits each other. I don't know why, but they do, haha. Was fun.

Other than that, we are still working hard, opening our mouths and talking to everyone! We have some investigators that are showing promise, and we will continue to do our best to help them gain the blessings of heaven. I love you family! Have a great week!

com amor,
Élder Kim

This is behind our chapel. This past Friday was a catholic holiday called Festa de São João. It was pretty fun to be able to eat good food, help our investigators get to know people, and have a good time. 

Wikipedia explains: "The festivities have been held in the city for more than six centuries, yet it was during the 19th century that Saint John's day became impregnated in the city's culture and assumed the status of the city's most important festival. An interesting tradition among the people of Porto during the 'Festa de São João', with roots in pagan courtship rituals, is to hit each other either with garlic flowers or soft plastic hammers."

Here is a picture taken in Porto. We go to porto, right across the river, to do email. This is of the Praça de Aliados, or Square of Aliados. There are tons of tourists and stuff. Élder Karthigeyan and I went and ate kebabs. Was mean! I love the kebabs! (Sorry no picture of that. I ate it too fast, kkkk.)

 Here is a view of the of the rain coming in one morning. It can be raining one minute, then sunny the next, as you can see the light reflecting off the buildings.

This is a family we found and taught the last two weeks. Right to left: The dad is José, the mom is Ana, the daughter is Maria, and the son is Bernardo. They are a part of a hard core sect of the Catholic church, like a church within the church (not sure how it works, it doesn't really make sense to me). They are really committed, however, to God and serving Him. They accepted the invitation to read the Book of Mormon, and we're excited for them. I know that if their faith is in God, as it should be, and not in their church, they will receive an answer of the truthfulness of these things.

Élder Karthigeyan took this pict to show the similiarity between my hair and the dying weeds on the side of the path as we were taking the "mountain pass" to get from a reference in the sister's area, to a potential investigator in another area, where we would "re-find" Carlos Peixoto. 

Here is a pict of our mission training we had this past week via a Skype-like application called Zoom. It was pretty cool. Sad thing was, even tho' we could see and hear everyone, we could not be heard or seen bcuz we neva have camera or mic. My companion and I are the one black square. Lame... someone took the camera we had, so yeah, small kine sad, but it was still a good training.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Gaia 6/19/17

Aloha Family!
Elder Kim and Elder Karthigeyan

It’s been getting HOT in Gaia! Fogo (Fire)! Been pretty nuts, but me and Elder Karthigeyan, we handle and get the work done. I would say grin and bear it, but it’s more like sweat and bear it.

We had our normal interviews with Presidente Amorim and it worked out great. I received great counsel on being a better leader and how to make sure to not limit people’s capacity by the way we "look at them".

We found some cool people despite the heat, and we were able to work with Carlos Braga almost every day this week. He just seems lighter because he’s been working with us. It’s just amazing to see the positive effect that the gospel has on the lives of the people who actually put it into practice. The gospel is true, I know it, and really, EVERYONE can know it as they experiment.

Estevão, this albino angolan we’re teaching came to church again and we’re excited for him!

Dad, I love you! Mom that goes for you too, and family, I love you guys too!

Have a great week family! Fight the good fight, keep the faith!

com amor,
Élder Kim

Sunset in Gaia

Monday, June 12, 2017

Gaia 6/12/17

This group of missionaries all came
to the Porto Mission at the same time.
The sisters will be returning home the
first week of July.
Sis. Foote, Sis. Cook, Sis. Paulo,
Elder Bortolo, Elder Wanlass, Elder Kim
( left to right)
Aloha Família!

We had mission council this week and was super cool to see a lot of my friends there. We talked a lot about the importance of putting what we learn into practice so that we might gain the blessings. Nobody receives the blessings until they keep the commandments. Nobody is paid before working; nobody knows what salt tastes like until you taste it. Its soo crazy that the sisters that came in with me to the mish are dying! (leaving the mission to return home)

Zone meeting ran rather smoothly. I felt like we were able to pass along what Presidente had asked us to pass and that everyone left more excited and ready to go than when they got there. Was a lot of work and headaches, but I'm glad we were able to get it done.

We had a division, and I went with Elder Rocha, who's from Brazil. We had a great division, and we spent the whole thing teaching! Was awesome! He really is a good teacher, and I learned a lot from him! We also had the opportunity to give two blessings, and mark an investigator for baptism! He's a great missionary and I really respect him a lot.

So yeah, we marked Carlos Peixoto! Super cool! He gave a super solid yes to being baptized on the 24th of this month, and we made the plans to help him drop smoking and coffee. He came to church, and he's like "wow I just feel like I need to be here, and this church is great!" It really is! Sadly he's not from our area.....but we prayed about it and we felt at peace in passing him (to the missionaries in that area), so I'm excited to see him baptized even if we're not the ones to do it. It's even cooler cuz the way we found him was when I contacted him on the street and invited him to be baptized. He said no and we parted ways, but after running into him repeatedly during the last few weeks, he accepted the invitation to listen to us and now look at him! The Lord works in mysterious ways!

Missionaries at service project:
Yard Service!!
Btw, we also had an ice cream night we put on with the ward and was a hit! We had a spiritual thought, then some games, then ice cream! We had like 4 investigators there and they loved it!

We helped Estevão and his bro to come to church too! They're from Angola, and Estevão is like an albino and their super dope! Love them!

Me and Elder Karthigeyan are working hard and doing our best. I'm so grateful for my comp and the desire he has to be and do better. We're doing our best, talking to everyone and God has been blessing us. I know He lives and loves us that we are proved in our things to prepare us for bigger and better things. God is good.

Family, I love you! Keep up the great work! Have a great week!

me ke aloha,
Elder Kim
(l-r) Sis Foote, Sis Cook, Elder Kim, Presidente Amorim, Elder Wanlass

The River Douro divides Gaia from Porto.

One of seven bridges that joins Gaia to Porto.

A pic from atop the bridge. It is a high,
scenic point where many tourists gather
to take pictures of the vista.