News Release

“Trust in the Lord”, says Elder Ribeiro

Newly called Area Seventy Elder Miguel Ribeiro of Mem Martins, Portugal has learned the power of trusting in the Lord and enduring to the end.

Elder Miguel Riberio, Portugal© 2023 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

Elder Ribeiro’s family joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints when he was 11 years old. His father was not a religious man, but he met the missionaries and accepted the invitation to be baptized during the second lesson with them. The whole family were united in their decision to join the Church and have faithfully lived the gospel since that time.

As he grew up, Elder Ribeiro looked forward to serving a mission as a church volunteer. He hoped he would be called on a foreign mission, but his missionary assignment was to serve in Portugal. He says he had a wonderful mission in his own country.

Professionally, Elder Ribeiro is the technical director for the Pestana Tennis Academy. As a tennis coach, he loves working with young people. He focuses on helping them develop healthy habits physically, mentally and emotionally. He planned to get a university degree in biology, but he changed to psychology because he felt this would help him be a better coach. His goal is to help young people learn to be athletes and then champions. In this process he supports them in developing the tools they need to thrive in a competitive world and become good citizens. He is an athlete himself. He was a football player and a tennis player before he became a coach, so he knows the challenges that come from being in an environment where competition is fierce.

He has been offered coaching opportunities in other countries, including the United States, where he could make a higher salary. At one time when they were considering taking one of these jobs, he and his wife fasted and prayed and went to the temple. They felt like the Lord wanted them to stay in Portugal. His wife Zélia said, “Our lives should be about serving the Lord.” Even though there have been some hard times, they feel like they made the right choice to stay in Portugal. They have learned to trust the Lord and endure to the end. They have learned that the Lord takes care of them when they try to do His work. As a bishop (local congregational leader) and a stake president (leading multiple congregations), he has been able to share these messages with others to help them during difficult times.

Elder Ribeiro says that Portugal is a special place and they and their four children are privileged
to live there.

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