News Release

Tongan Government Leader Visits Latter-day Saint Headquarters in Salt Lake City

The Honourable Lord Vaea, Minister for Internal Affairs of the Government of Tonga, was recently hosted at the Salt Lake City, Utah headquarters of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Elder Tad R. Callister, a member of the Presidency of the Seventy.

Elder Callister has strong connections to Tonga, having previously served as President of the Pacific Area of the Church.

During the visit Elder Callister presented Lord Vaea with a Mormon Tabernacle Choir CD and copies of The Family: A Proclamation to the World, and The Living Christ: The Testimony of the Apostles, at a luncheon held in the visitor’s honor in the Joseph Smith Memorial Building.

Lord Vaea was accompanied by Ms. Sela Tukia of the Tongan Consul General’s office in San Francisco, and Evelyn Slade, Board President of the National Tongan-American Society.

The luncheon was also attended by President Supi Mailei of the Salt Lake Utah Stake (Tongan); President Isi Tausinga of the Salt Lake Utah South Stake (Tongan), and representing the Tongan Family History Center; and others from the Church’s Family History and Public Affairs Departments.

Following lunch, Lord Vaea visited the Church’s Family History Library, where he viewed a pedigree chart, prepared by library staff for the occasion, showing seven generations of his family.

Upon his return to Tonga Lord Vaea spoke of the importance of preserving a nation’s oral and written heritage through “good record management.”

This, he says, allows one to travel through the years to learn about one’s family and to re-analyze events.

The Latter-day Saints’ Family History Library maintains the world’s largest repository of genealogical resources with vital records from over 110 countries, territories and possessions. There are over 4,000 branches of the library (family history centers) in more than 70 countries, including Tonga.




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