News Release

The Church Donates Oxygen, Medical Supplies and Food to Support Brazil During COVID-19 

Donations include US$5.8 million in oxygen and enough food for 1 million Brazilians

To help bear the burden of COVID-19 in Brazil, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is providing US$5.8 million worth of oxygen to hospitals in the Amazon region, medical supplies to hospitals throughout Brazil and enough food to feed about 1 million Brazilians.

In the northeastern state of Bahia, the Church recently delivered 60,000 food baskets to those in need in the state's capital of Salvador. The distribution was announced in a meeting with Salvadoran Mayor Bruno Reis, and other government officials and the Church’s Brazil Area Presidency, including Elder Adilson de Paula Parrella and Elder Joni L. Koch.

“Our main objective is to bring a little relief and love to people and families who are currently without food,” Elder Parella said when talking about the basic food donations.

“It is undoubtedly a very welcome help,” Mayor Reis said. “We have done everything to bring food to the table of people who are in need, and such help is very significant.”

The 60,000 baskets will be distributed with the help of the municipal secretary for social assistance, racial equality and citizenship.

During the conversation, Mayor Reis expressed a desire to get to know The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints better, and Elder Joni Koch explained a little about the Church.

“Mayor, among other things, the Church builds temples around the world, with purposes similar to the temples described in the Bible in the Old Testament. And it is with joy that we would like to inform you that a temple of the Church of Jesus Christ will be built here in Salvador.”

The mayor received a booklet with a computerized image of the facade of the Salvador Brazil Temple, with photos and details about other temples around the world. “A construction like this will create jobs and make our city even more beautiful,” the mayor said. “I’m happy that a temple like this will be built here.”

Elder Parrella invited government leaders to the temple’s groundbreaking ceremony, which will take place in August 2021.

Earlier this week, the Area Presidency met with Governor Eduardo Leite of the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul. The governor stressed the importance of the meeting. “I am very happy with your visit,” he said. “I know that the first role of the Church is to relieve sad hearts, to carry a message of hope and faith. I respect and admire your Church.”

The Church is donating 70,000 basic food baskets to Rio Grande do Sul to help those affected by the pandemic. “It is a very substantial aid. I am even touched. Thank you very much for the generosity of the Church,” Governor Leite said.

Elder Koch said the Church has acted with great caution and care in resuming its meetings, following all health protocols under the direction of the state government. Most Church members, he said, have participated in Church worship through online meetings. Governor Leite thanked the Church for emphasizing safety.

The governor invited the state’s head of the Military House and state coordinator for Civil Protection and Defense, Colonel Júlio César Rocha Lopes, to meet with Elders Parrella and Koch. The Colonel is ensuring that the food baskets reach the citizens of the state.

The Church donated an additional 50,000 food baskets on May 1 to support “Band Contra a Fome,” a project in the state of São Paulo. And more food is on the way to other areas of Brazil. In total, the Church will donate more than 320,000 food baskets.

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