Saturday, September 19, 2009

Shapers: Liahona Stake Pioneer Day in Tonga

The Kioa family recently welcomed two of their children home from missions in California. Malakai’s mission president called him the "shaper" as he trained the elders there. I like that word! Even as our parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents sacrificed much to shape our generation, we are the shapers for this century linking the past with the future . We must be today’s pioneers firm in the Gospel through the lives we live. We are the shapers not only of our own future, but also for our children, our grandchildren and our great-grandchildren in the generations that follow. We each can make a positive difference in the days ahead, and in joint effort with the Lord, we can be shapers to help build the kingdom of God here on earth.

Malakai and his sister Sela receive a joyous welcome home after serving honorable missions in California. What a dynamic duo these two are!Elder and Sister KioaSenior Shapers: Some of the Senior missionaries were blessed to meet with Pres. Hamula of the Pacific Area Presidency: Elders and Sisters Ka'ili, Sperry, Hawley, Elder Hamula with President McMurray (back), Claytons, Sings, Gordons, Tau'a alos, TongasMissionary Couples with Elder Hamula, 2nd counselor in the Pacific Area Presidency from NZSeveral of these pioneers were here when the first wards and stakes were organized in Tonga. It was a cool winter day this early August morning.111Brother Pope a former BYU professor was one of the early missionaries here. He later became the Liahona High School principal. He met Mary and they adopted Tongan children and have lived here ever since.136 Families from the surrounding villages gathered for Pioneer Day August 25th to celebrate the missionaries coming to Tonga to preach the Gospel. 116115 Inoke Kupu enjoyed the festivities; he is the Liahona stake president and our CES country director as well as ITEP coordinator; Keith Vaitai is a sweet Primary child. 207Tamaline Kaufusi and Moana Kupu (Inoke’s wife) smile greetings.Tamaline and Moana Although the Liahona students were on term break, several our 2nd ward families enjoy the festivities.2nd ward Lots of smiles and laughs during the extemporaneous poetry competition about Pioneers:140 Basket weaving competition with half a coconut palm leaf:Basket weaving contests

147 Kioa brothers weaving baskets in record time:150 152 154 And the winner is---155 Priesthood Power! (Tuwai Latu, Elder Hawley, Inoke, Roy)177182 Inoke Jr. entertains some of the 2nd ward Primary children:188 Primary children from one of the village wards perform while members provide the music: 194 195 This village group of Relief Society sisters tell the story of the pioneers with their hands: 200206 YM and YW honor the pioneers through song and dance:208 Baby and Gordon enjoy the celebration!212 Our Primary kids enjoy line dancing in preparation for their quarterly activity:JJ and Keith Willing teachers join in the fun. (Mounga, back right, is a student at Liahona.)061 We are the pioneers of a new century. What will be written about us? How are we shaping our legacy? It is our responsibility and opportunity to gain a strong testimony and understanding of the Restored Gospel that we may strengthen those who follow.067

1 comment:

Survivor of Seven said...

So good to chat with you last night. Love the picture of Elder Hawley with the walking board(?) thing. Maybe they will have to make him scoutmaster when you return and he can help the scouts build one. Looks like fun!