News Release

FamilySearch Unites Generations During Book Fair in Brazil

Lectures on genealogy were featured by FamilySearch at 26th São Paulo International Book Biennial

Thousands of Brazilians learned about their family history as they stopped by the FamilySearch booth during the 26th São Paulo International Book Biennial (26ª Bienal Internacional do Livro de São Paulo).

For the first time, at the nation’s largest book fair, FamilySearch presented a large exhibit that showcased a variety of resources and discovery experiences. These tools enabled visitors to advance their respective genealogies and start their own virtual family history books.

“The initial purpose of FamilySearch’s participation in the 26th international book biennial was to help participants write the book of their lives through the free resources and tools we have that bring joy to all people as they discover, reunite and connect with their family — past, present and future,” explained Fábio Falcão Lucas, general manager of FamilySearch for Brazil.

Nearly 500 volunteers participated in the FamilySearch exhibit over nine days (July 2-10, 2022). Thousands of visitors were able to create free accounts and add their names to FamilySearch’s collaborative family tree.

“With the end of our first participation in this important and historic event, our hearts are full of gratitude for the many miracles we witnessed,” expressed Lucas. “The exposure we had with major media outlets and the unparalleled contribution of the many speakers who generously accepted the invitation to appear at our booth made us see clearly and unmistakably the kind hand of our loving Heavenly Father.”

The exhibit featured 54 lectures on various topics related to ancestry, with titles such as “The Origin of Surnames,” “Processes for Portuguese and Italian Citizenship” and “Technological Resources for Research.”

Journalist and international correspondent Ilze Scamparini, from TV Globo, made a special appearance. Her presentation focused on the relationship between Italians and their current-day descendants across the globe. She was excited and grateful to receive part of her genealogy, with several records, as a gift from the FamilySearch Brazil team.

Many visitors shared their thoughts after stopping by the exhibit, including Silvia Miquelino, 52, whose son sought information on his paternal great-grandmother. Miquelino found several pieces of information and documents that she could easily send digitally. Her son was very happy to learn that he could also go to a local Family History Center and find additional help.

André Luiz da Conceição finds family history research therapeutic. He came across the FamilySearch website five years ago while researching his relatives from Portugal, Spain and Italy, and has used the tool ever since. Conceição praised the changes and advances of the site over the years. “It was very impressive when I located an immigration document with a photo of my grandfather,” he said.

Matheus Emerick, the exhibit coordinator and volunteer, shared his favorite experience of the event. He met writer Dani de Brito and helped her start a family tree. In the process, they discovered the birth certificate of the writer’s grandmother, which deeply moved de Brito, who cried and embraced Emerick. They went on to find 10 generations of de Brito’s family members. The two also discovered that they were 10th cousins.

About the 26th International Book Biennial

The São Paulo International Book Biennial is a cultural event that features literature, gastronomy, culture and business. The organizers announced a record 660,000 visitors to this year’s edition. There were more than 1,300 hours of cultural programming, more than 500 attractions, 300 national and international authors, 185 exhibitors, eight cultural spaces and more than 3 million books sold.

About FamilySearch

FamilySearch resources help millions of people around the world discover their heritage and connect with family members. FamilySearch’s work involves collaborations with more than 10,000 archives and partners in over 100 countries.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints provides FamilySearch free of charge to everyone, regardless of tradition, culture or religious affiliation.

This story was originally published in Portuguese. 

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