Elder Michael in Niuatoputapu

Elder Michael in Niuatoputapu
The Other Side of Heaven

Friday, September 28, 2012

Baptisms, Temple, Niua and Elder I

Dear family,
This was really a very special week, it all started last sunday when Sky, the chinese man that we have been teaching for a while was finally baptized. It was really a special baptisim, the entire ward showed up for it and even President Tukuafu was there.  That night we had a "open House" a lot like a fireside, that's focus was on missionary work. Sky bore his testimony and shared the story of when he was in Niua and how he came to know that there is a God,  it was really a great testimony and set the tone for the entire fireside. President spoke as well as another man who went through 18 missionaries before he finally got baptized.  then the 1st counseler in the Stake Presidency spoke, he is from Niua, and talked abput the missionaries that taught and baptized him there. It has a very "niua' them to the fireside. That was just sunday, Monday we were very busy teaching and preparing people to be baptized. We taught again the 'Aho family, we taught about the Book of Mormon and committed them to read it and come to ward conference this sunday.  Tuesday was another busy daydoing Office work. Then Wednes day was really a remarkable day. It started off by having orientaion meetings with new missionaries who have just come from the MTC in NZ, they are suppose to go overseas but are waiting on Visas so they will work here in Tonga for a little bit until they get there visa.  After the orientation meettings Elder Fisher and I had the marvlous  oppourtunity to witness the sealing of a family in the Temple.  The mom, Silongo, grew up in the Church and has always been strong in the Church, she is the Relief Society President, her Husband, Elivisi, is a convert who was baptized last year, (his parent come from Niuatoputapu, another Niua connection) he is a high ranking  Officer in the Tongan Army. They have 3 children whose ages are 11,13&15. it was the first time for both of us to witness a sealing and it really was a cool thing to experience. President Tukuafu was there with too.  The spirit was so strong! Especially when the children walked in, wow that was amazingly powerful all white and everything. I wont ever forget how i felt in that room.  its cool to think i will be able to experience the same thing with my wife one day.  that was Wednesday, then on Thursday we had the baptism of Hulita Vai and Peni Hausia. I baptized Hulita, It was special as I hadn't performed a baptisim since June.  Then Yesterday i was on a Vilo Hoa (Comp Exchange) with Elder Tafea, who is from Beaverton Oregon, and only has 16 days left in the mission. His family comes from Niua and he served there after me, we are really close and had a lot of fun on the vilo hoa. oh and of course yesterday Elder I came by the office straight from the airpiort (the office is right next to his house) and drops off your package, i had just left the office so i missed him, but the office elders called me back and we drove back to the office and opened it and ate the cookies,. thanks so much for that, the plane ride wasnt good for them and they had crumbly but still tasty!! they really did remind me of home.  I loved all your letters, wow things really have been shaken up in the stake, things are changing, but the Church is still true!!  Then today i just got back from Elder I's house, i was so excited to see him, and i think he was excited to see me, we talked and laughed for like 20 mins. We found him at his mom's office working on reapplying to BYU-H, here is a picture, i thought that it was really funny that last time we saw each other we were both wearing suits, pants, and shoes, but today we were both wearing  tupenus (skirts) and sandels.  he says that he feels really weird to be home, he dreamed last night that he was still on his mission. we are going to have Pday tofay at the Liahona Gym and since he lives on Liahona campus he is going to try to gome over to play with us. i am going to try to go to his Homecoming talk tomorrow.
The great week is not over as fisi'inaua is being baptized today at 6 then tomorrow is areally busy day
I love you all so much thanks for all your love and prayers!

'Ofa lahi atu
Elder Maikolo

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