Monday, December 26, 2016

Pictures of Tonga

Last week Levi sent a bunch of pictures from his trip around Tonga. Since there were too many to put on that post, we saved them for this week. Tonga has four island groups. 1) The Tongatapu group which is the most southern group, most populated and where the mission home is based.  2) Ha'apai group which looks like a ton of little islands and is just above Tongatapu. 3) The Vava'u group which is the next Northern group and has bigger islands.  4) The Niuatoputapu group that is so far North and where the conference was earlier this month.

 Two small islands from the Ha'apai group.


Levi in Vava'u
Vava'u, 3rd island group

Niua, the 4th Island group

Leaving Niua.

Tafahi, an island of about 20 people that juts out of the ocean about 6 miles from Niua.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Hey family and friends!

The island where Elder Groberg went to
pray and read the Book of Mormon.
These past 2 weeks have had some pretty crazy, memorable events. The main reason for that was the District Conference in Niuatoputapu on Dec. 11th. Backround: Niuatoputapu (or Niua) is an island in Tonga 800 miles north of the main island of Tonga, closer to Samoa than anywhere else.  It's super small, with maybe 500-600 people living there. It is also the island from "The other side of Heaven," with Elder Groberg. Every missionary in Tonga wants to go to Niua because it's so remote and it's like going back in time. Because there wasn't a plane going there until sometime in January, President decided to charter a boat for the conference, sell tickets to people who wanted to go to Niua and take the entire office, including us!

Before I talk about Niua I better talk about the boat ride,
since I spent more time in the boat than in Niua (dang). We took the boat "Maggie Cat," which was not a big boat, holding probably 200 people, but it was really nice and pretty fast too. Our schedule was to leave Friday, take the 6-7 hour boat ride to Vava'u, sleep there, then wake up early on Saturday to take the 8-9 hour boat ride to Niua, then come back the next day after the conference to sleep at Vava'u, then come back to Tonga. Haha.  I calculated it up and it was 35 hours on a boat. And this was me on the boat the entire time.

I immediately felt terrible for Elder Groberg who had to take an 8 day journey from Tonga to Niua in a rowboat. The 9 hour journey from Niua back to Vava'u was especially bad cause the sea was terrible. I never threw-up, thankfully, but I was laying down on the top deck in the fresh air the entire time. It was pretty awful, but it's a good memory to have and I know I will never take a boat ride that long ever again.


My first impression of Niua was that it's way beautiful, and waaaay small. The first thing we did was of traditional Tongan manner, EAT.  For one of the poorest islands of the world they prepared us a feast - pigs, lobster, crab, and a lot more. As you can see I took the liberty of taking one of the pig heads (side note: pig tongue is really good, but don't go for the roof of the tongue, it's gross).

After that we went to the Priesthood Session of conference. Attendance was about 20​ with probably about 7 from the island. The church is really, really small. I had heard that there were about 10 member families on the entire island, but it's amazing to see the faith and the strength of the members. One thing that really struck me from the Priesthood Session is that all of the members were very committed to going to the temple even though it's a once-in-a-lifetime trip to get to Tonga and to get to the temple.

That night we had a Holahula (dance) and invited the entire island. It was probably the biggest activity on the island in a long time. Probably 150-200 people showed up.  We brought ice cream and a speaker and a ton of people to participate. While the Hulahula was going on I was helping record patriarchal blessings with the Patriarch that came along. It was really humbling to see people that had wanted a blessing for so long and were finally able to receive it. I probably recorded about 7 blessings.

Lastly we had the Sunday conference which probably had 200 people there, a ton of them non- members. It was a really good conference and a lot of powerful testimonies were given about simple doctrines of the church. The entire mission presidency spoke along with the district president in Niua. 

In conclusion (oh gosh I feel like I'm writing an essay), it was super fun in Niua, I know that it was a once-in-a-lifetime trip, and though the boat ride was a little rough and it was a 4:30 wake up go to bed at 1:00 kind of trip, I was glad I got the opportunity to go. I could totally tell why Elder Groberg thought that this island was the other side of heaven.  It's such a beautiful island and the people are all so faithful. The word Niuatoputapu literally means sacred island and when I was on the island I could feel it. If this isn't really weird - you could feel the magic coming from the island.  I testify we have a God who's good and mysterious, and that he gave us the gift us his son.

Love you all,
Ofa Atu,
Elder Wilson

Monday, December 5, 2016

Another good week!

This week was the mission tour. Elder Haleck, the president of the Area Seventy Presidency, came to speak to the entire mission. He did four different sessions, 2 in Tonga, 1 in Ha'apai, and 1 in Vava'u. He talked about Baptism which was a good topic to speak about, especially for me. One problem that has occurred in the Tonga Mission (probably just a pacific problem in general), is the term Papi no ia, which means that there is no point in baptisms. Just go take some random person of the street and baptize them. Elder Haleck talked about the importance of baptism and making sure people are ready to make the covenants with God. He also mentioned the quote in the PMG from Elder Ballard that baptism opens the gate to Celestial Kingdom. His message and spirit was really good for the mission. 

One small miracle I saw this week:  Elder Cho and I went to see Solomoni our investigator. We went to the house that we usually teach him and it turns out that his parents (devout Wesleyans) had gotten super mad that we had taught him and wouldn't let us teach him anymore. After that bad news, as we were driving back to the office I saw this little road going to uta (bush). As soon as we drove past it I said, quote,"Flip Elder Cho." and we turned the car around and went down this terrible, awful dirt road. After following it for a little ways we found this tiny little house with a small family of three. We haven't had the opportunity to teach them yet but we will see what happens. It's amazing to see how God works.

In other news, Elder Cho and I are reteaching the lessons to Elaini, and continuing to teach English class. 

Sometimes it pours over here but it's maybe once every 2-3 days. But right now really it just getting HOT. Honestly, it's probably the best time to be in the office because of the heat.

Next week I might have the chance to go somewhere in Tonga and won't be able to email. Depending on that I may have a Tika (sick/ awesome) email to send  the next Saturday.  

I love you all and I love my God!
Church is True!

Elder Wilson

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Tongan Living

Hello Family and Friends,

It's been another good week in Tonga, but I totally forgot that this week was Thanksgiving! Obviously nobody celebrates Thanksgiving over here in Tonga, and it was around 7:00 on Thursday and I turned to Elder Cho and said, "wait, today is Thanksgiving!" Some things I'm thankful for are: water, a roof, the opportunity after my mission to post up AJ, the opportunity to serve in Tonga, friends, and family. 

Our progressing investigator, named Elaini, is going to be baptized today! We set up her baptismal date for next week but since she is ready now and is going to be out of town next week we decided to have it today! Pretty rushed getting everything together, but I'm excited for her baptism today and her confirmation tomorrow.  

Things I feel like I should mention:
1. Tongan family terms. I figured out why everybody in Tonga is family. They don't have the term "once removed, " so therefore everybody is either a cousin, Aunt or Uncle. There is no such thing as a 2nd cousin or a cousin once removed.

2.  My comp Elder Cho is the bomb. He's From Taiwan and has such a funny personality. He takes everything really seriously and it's pretty funny when President gives him crazy tasks to do or jokes around with him. His personality is such that you will never forget him. The senior couple that live next door to us don't even know my name, they just know Elder Cho, haha.  I got to used to that a while ago.  

3. We drove to the other side of the island this week. Got some good pics. 

That's pretty much it for this past week. This next week in the office we are preparing for the mission tour that will happen the following week with Elder Halick of the seventy and his wife. 

Ofa Lahi Atu, lau 'a e ngaahi folofola, lotu, alu to lotu, tauhi 'ae ngaahi fekau, ko ia pe. 
Thank you for your prayers and support, love you guys(especially the fam) very much!

Elder Wilson

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Hello Family and friends! 

This week was transfer week, which brought more stress than anything in the world. But things went smoothly. Some things we do for transfer week:

1. Host the missionaries in our dorm - we had 14 elders in our living quarters this week.
2. Get all the flights/boats. It's crazy to get everybody from island to island, especially with the large amount of transfers we have and last minute switches.
3. Take missionaries to the airport. We woke up at 5 every day this week to take missionaries to the airport (about a 30-40 minute drive). 
4. Make sure everything is good for the arriving missionaries. It was nice that we only had 6 this week.
5. All of our regular office duties on top of that. 

So this week was super crazy and way tiring, but it went well and I'm glad it's over.

In other (better) news, we had a baptism today for Sione and Malolo Lealiki. These boys are absolutely brilliant and I'm really glad I had the opportunity to baptize them. I know that they won't just join the kingdom of God, but they will contribute to it. It astonishes me how smart these kids are, especially Sione.  He knows the gospel better than I did 5 months ago! 

When we went to do the ordinance, surprising I wasn't super scared, even though it was my first time. The first baptism for Malolo went really well. But with Sione it took 3 tries to get his baptism correct because he was too tall and it was really hard to get him down and back up in the water. I felt pretty bad. As a 14-year-old teenager that would have crushed all of my confidence. But right afterward Sione gave a powerful testimony of the gospel and of it's truthfulness. 

We also are progressing well with our investigator Solomoni. We have a baptism date for December 3rd. He comes from a family who are Wesleyan and he travels from the other side of the island for us to teach him.  He asks a lot of really good questions and understands my Tongan which is nice. I'm just scared if he asks me to baptize him because he's a regular Tongan. HUGE. 

I love you all, the Church is true,
Elder Wilson

P.s I got a sick Haircut.  

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Transfer Week

The weeks before and during transfers are really busy in the office. We have to get everything ready for the departing and incoming missionaries. It's really nice because it's not the summer months so we only have intakes of 6 instead of 30, like my intake. A lot of stuff we have to do for the new missionaries is visa stuff which is super fakhela (annoying) because nobody's application is ever completely filled out. But it's really fun to send off the old missionaries and have the new intakes come in, which will happen this Wednesday. 

Since most of my time was spent in the office this week, here are some random tid-bits that have happened to me in Tonga,

While I was eating at a member's house, I started chanting at my companion to keep eating (my 5'6' 125 pound Taiwanese Comp) and the member who was feeding us, a 60- year-old women, started chanting with me, kai Cho, kai Cho,(eat Cho) and then started giggling. It was so funny. There are so many times where I feel like Tongans who are 10-years-old are way more mature than I am, and times where I feel like I'm more mature than older people.

Our fafanga [the person feeding them] dropped off two chickens.

My favorite food is Tongan Pineapple. There is nothing like it in the world and I would eat it lunch, dinner, and breakfast,

I just realized that I have been out on my mission 4 months. It's so crazy how time flies. I testify that this is the true church of Jesus Christ and that as we become like Him we will see more Happiness and Joy in our own life. Love you all, please read the scriptures, it's absolutely pointless not to read them because they're true. 

Elder Wilson

My brother, Elder Lasike, from Australia who can literally do everything.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Well, it's been a pretty interesting week here in Tonga and especially in the office. I played basketball three times this week at 5 in the morning. It's funny how a person can be motivated enough to wake up at 5 and ball. It's not very competitive but it's pretty dang funny. I also got to see the Busbys, a senior couple from our new ward in Pleasant Grove.  It was really fun to talk to them.  Then we had a crazy lightning storm that blew out the power and the phone network here in Tonga, hence why I'm emailing a day late.

This week we had planned for three baptisms on Saturday.  The kids we were teaching weren't lava (able to) because their parents don't like the church, and our other investigator went hola (kinda of like fled or ran away) on us. Sooooooooooooooo...... that kind of sums up our week. But the work is still progressing and we will for sure have our other two investigators be baptized this Saturday. 

Elder Cho and I also taught a man at church today named Solomon, he seemed very interested and it was a good lesson by the spirit. We got another appointment to teach him this Saturday. (P.S I understand everything that is being said in the lessons but I still have very little ability to communicate my feeling and my thoughts.)  

Last thing is gratitude.  I'm grateful for electricity, a bed, pens that have ink in them, basketball, education, Skippys cereal, Fijian Sugar, New Zealand Chocolate, people named Freddy, Dame Dolla, but the most important is my family.  Families are the only unit that you take with you through eternity - you don't get no class, no club, no ward to come with you,  But you have something a billion times better, family.  Family is the best thing ever and I love my family on earth and the one in Heaven. I know we have a heavenly Father that loves us so much, even to tear us down so we can be built back up, and that through the atonement, the grace and blood of Jesus Christ, we can be with him, and with our families that we have here on earth, for eternity.  "Because of him"(The best Mormon message ever)

I love you all. I have been studying Ether 12 a lot this week and I would invite you to all reread it.

I'm a proud uncle.
Ofa Atu
Elder Wilson

Sunday, October 30, 2016

YO family and friends,

Life has been kinda the same this week and this will probably be a short email. We have an elder with us from Ha'apai who has a gash in his foot the size mars so we can't really get out and do much. A lot of time was spent in the office this past week.

Elder Cho and I started with 3 new investigators. T is a 26 year old man from Vava'u, and the members referred us to two brothers ages 11 and 9. We taught them lesson one and they all committed to baptism. When I look back on this transfer I'll look back and think wow, Elder Cho and I didn't do a lot of work in our area and we still had 6 baptisms. It's a totally different place in Liahona than any other area in Tonga.  

This week I've been going crazy hard on Ch. 6 (Christlike attributes) in Preach My Gospel. It's the best chapter ever. I know that it really doesn't matter how much I know, or how good my teaching skills are, or my ability with the language (which really does help) to be the best missionary, but it's humbling myself and becoming more Christlike.

I love this Gospel and how family's are forever. We can continually be changed and become more Christlike through the Atonement of our Savior. 

Ofa Lahi Atu, 
Elder Wilson

PS.  Shoutout to Tanner Karp, AKA the best man alive with his weekly Blazer Emails. Dame for MVP.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Crazy fast week this week. 

On Sunday Elder Gardiner and I went to teach a lesson in English. It was pretty iffy jiffy in terms of our lesson, I think probably because we both haven't taught in English for a while, but it went well and we got two baptismal dates, two boys named Sione and Malolo ages 13 and 10. Their mom and sister are both members and they have good support around them. 

We had a Zone meeting this week and Elder Cho and I were teaching about pride and loto faka toki lalo (humility). I prepared to teach in English, but about 5 minutes before we were to teach in the zone meeting I kinda said to myself, "flip Elder I wanna teach in Tongan", so I did, and it went pretty terrible. Haha. I feel good about my Tongan but it's gonna struggle in the office. I try to speak it as much as I can but most things I have to do in English. I told my companion he can only talk to me in Tongan. 

Life has been good - going fast.  I'm just trying to become more Christlike and not gain weight. 

Ofa Lahi Atu,
Elder Vilisoni

                                        [Probably Father Hefa from last week's post.]

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Here are 5 things about this week, (sorry I'm not super creative):

1. The  Liahona area in Nuku'alofa is like Provo, except it's one hundo percent Mormon.  So basically, people just bring us investigators from different parts of the island.  In our case this week we found M who is 16 years old and from New Zealand. She had been taught some of these lessons before but we still taught her all the lessons again.  It was really fun and good for me to teach her because she could understand some of my Tongan and life is better when I'm able to communicate in the lessons. We taught her Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, interviewed on Friday and baptized on Saturday. 

2. We had a follow-up meeting with my entire intake group. It was super fun to see Elder Poulsen and Elder Manu and the rest of my intake again. 

3. I got to see FATHER HEFA. [The father of the family whose house Levi helped build last year when he was in Tonga on his humanitarian trip.]  One of the zones in Tonga went to the temple and I went to connect with the zone and I saw him walking out of the temple. It was so fun to be able to talk to him. He looked super good. We were both in a rush but he said that David is preparing to go on his mission and that Nephi and the Twins are still going to school at Liahona and are doing well. He said he might send them over to the mission complex one day, and hopefully I'll be able to talk to them more. 

4. I got my driver's license this week - $60 bucks and a flash of an American license and I was set.

5. I went to the blow holes this week.  Even though the pictures are super sweet it's nothing like actually being there. It's so beautiful. (This is a part of my "wear in the world" Blazer campaign, Ubi. I put you in charge of getting me there.  I better have some free Blazer tix when I come back.)

Lastly- I am 180 pounds! Oh my gosh I am so fat, It's honestly so scary, I might be fasting a couple times next week. 

I testify this work and this Church is true and we got a prophet and some dang good apostles on the earth right now.


Elder Vilisoni

Sunday, October 9, 2016


These past 5 days have been crazy. Like I said last week I was transferred to the office and my companions are Elder Cho from Taiwan and Elder Gardiner from Vernal Utah. Elder Gardiner is training us and he's a cool and funny guy, but it really scares me that he gained 40 pounds in the office. Elder Cho is awesome too. He just hit his year mark and is SUPER CLEAN. Compared to Tongans I'm super clean. If you compared Elder Cho to Damian Lillard in terms of cleanliness, I would probably be somewhere around Gordon Hayward, but it's good for me.

Transfers were insane.  The office elders stay right next to the office in the "Dorm", and the 19 elders who were training all stayed with us in our room with 5 beds. It was crazy but way fun. Except for yesterday we've had at least 10 elders in the dorm with us. We also picked up the new intake which was so weird.  I've only been here six weeks and they're all asking me advice! Haha but it's fun to meet all the missionaries. That's the main thing I liked about this week, that I got to see a ton of missionaries and I make a lot of friends.

What I've done this week: 
1) Make flights.  Everybody going to the other islands, Vava'u or Ha'apai needs to go on a boat or a plane to get there and we are in charge of making sure that everybody gets there, hopefully with their luggage.
2) Get food for everybody.  We go to restaurants and buy food for everybody. Tongans eat a lot of food.
3) Normal office stuff, processing things and getting random materials for everybody etc. 

One skill I'm going to need to learn is a stick shift, and driving on the left side of the road, because I'm going to be driving as soon as Elder Gardiner leaves which scares me more than AJ twisting an ankle. Life has been good, but pretty stressful.  I don't know a whole lot but that's alright because Elder Cho, with his Chinese brain, basically knows everything.

Lastly conference, I just got back from the first session of conference. It was amazing! I felt like every speaker said something that was of great importance to me. I loved Elder Uchtdorf's talk to start it off about finding joy in what we have and not taking doctrines or ordinances for granted. I think that's something that everybody, especially me, needs to know.  To take the sacrament more serious and find Joy in the plan of Salvation.

Ofa Atu,
Elder Wilson

Sunday, October 2, 2016


Well, the big news of the week is that I'm getting transferred to... the mission office. Wahoo! At first I had no idea what to think about this news, to be an office elder sounds so weird and I had never though about that before, especially this early on my mission. Some pros I've heard about being an office elder -  
1. I get to go everywhere and see everybody, all over the main island and maybe even to Vava'u and Ha'apai. 
2. First class. I get one of those... what do you call it? umm... Oh a stove.
3. I get to be close to president and his family.
4. BASKETBALL, President Tuione likes to ball and I'm gonna be balling with him every morning at five in the morning. 

Some cons
1. I'm about to gain weight, please pray for me not to get fat. The last two office elders gained about 50 pounds, not kidding.
2. I'm gonna be speaking a lot of English which is gonna hurt my Tongan.
3. Not the typical missionary work. It's really not that bad actually because I will have still have time to teach investigators that are sometimes brought to the office, so I won't be totally out of the loop. 

Pea has been interesting, and as the start of my mission was pretty rough and hard, but as I sat in church yesterday, I saw the two converts, two inactives, and two new investigators sitting in the back, so life really is good. The main thing I learned this transfer is to trust God and put your faith in him.  I would like to share a quote, "If you ain't got faith, you ain't got nuttin."  The only way we can get through challenges, is to put our faith in him.   

I love you all. Tonga is a week behind on conference, so I'm just waiting for next week to like no other. 

Ofa Atu

Elder Wilson

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


Just a few things that happened this week -

The First Counselor (Simote) took my companion and I to dinner this week and we got in the car thinking he was going to take us to one of the local falekai  but instead he took us clear to the other side of the Island to the best place in Tonga, To explain my problems with eating let me explain this meal in detail:

Background:  before the dinner I thought that the Fafonga wasn't lava (not gonna happen) so I ate 2 bowls of some Tongan cereal and some top ramen so in American Terms I'm wasn't really hungry.
Introduction:  We order an appetizer, get a family size pizza, which in Tonga Means extended family as well. I have 5 pieces of of pizza to start, 4 Hawaiian and 1 meat lover.
1st body paragraph: Then the real food comes, pasta with meatballs, 5 meatballs the size of tennis balls. Currently my state is already full from the pizza.
2nd body paragraph: Manage to finish the meatballs, now I'm stuffed to Mars, Simote, tells me to eat the rest of the pizza,(three pieces) I drink a bottle of water in preparation but I'm currently dead.
3rd body paragraph, It takes me 15 minuets to eat one slice of pizza, I drink two more water bottles, I finish half of another slice and cover it up with my napkin, I currently cannot eat any more and think I just gained 30 pounds right there.
Conclusion: He buys us ice cream and cake, we take it home I lay down and am unable to stand.

Aside from that, the work is going alright. We have 4 new investigators that have potential. We might have 1-2 baptisms this week or next week depending on the progress of our investigators.

Church is true and Mormon 9 is a way awesome chapter
Ofa atu
Elder Wilson

P.S.  I finally have my Tongan name, Elder Vilisoni which means "vision" in Tongan.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016


Life has been going in Tonga.  Just a few things that have happened in this last week. 

One, we had our two baptisms on Saturday for Asena and Mataola. It went really well, The Bishop baptized both of them. One problem I see in Tonga is a lot of people get baptized for the wrong reasons. But I really feel good about Asena and Mataola because they seem like they are going be really strong. Asena might be thinking about serving a mission which would be awesome. 

Two, I SAW A BLAZER SHIRT, HOLY COW. It was really good timing too! I wasn't feeling so good at the time but I walked into the house to eat and there it was, the best shirt in all of Tonga. (Picture attached below).

Three, right now my companion and I are just trying to find new investigators and try to strengthen the ward. I didn't really do a whole lot this week quite honestly. Tonga is a small country and these areas are tiny! I'm just trying to be the best missionary I can be and adjust to missionary work in Tonga.  


Monday, September 12, 2016


Life is good in Tonga. I spent a lot of time writing personal emails this week so I don't have a whole lot of time.  Elder Talisa and I have two baptisms set up for this Saturday, the 19-year-old who we have been teaching these past couple of weeks, and an 11-year-old in the ward who randomly hasn't been baptized (Tongan lifestyle).

I've been sick the entire week. Last P-day I ate some dog(very popular p-day activity) and then had stomach problems the rest of the week, but I'm getting over it and I have gotten back to work these past couple of days. Honestly the hardest thing for me so far is not being able to communicate with anybody, My patience with myself is really struggling. But I've been improving and life has gotten better this last week. Other than that I'm just trying to work hard to be the best missionary I can be. 

Also the first aid kits made it to Tonga. [From his eagle project last winter.] The customs people went all through the boxes but didn't take anything. We actually are going to deliver them to the School here in my area which is gonna be pretty awesome.

Random Tongan saying:  when you greet people you give a "YO" which is way fun.

Work hard, eat hard, pray harder.
If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door.

Devin Booker is MVP is three years.

Uncle Leaves


Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Hey! I'm starting to adjust to life here is Tonga. Life has been pretty hard this week but I've endured and I'm ready for another week. I've had the chance to read the scriptures a lot this week and every time I'm feeling down I've always found comfort in the scriptures. I've really liked Joshua 1:9.

Just some random things about my life in Tonga:

1. My MQ (missionary quarters) is a 12x12 ft tiny house thing. It has a sink, fridge, desk, two beds, and a bathroom. Whats funny is that my MQ is way better than the other elders because it used to be a sisters MQ. I saw my first molo'kau( centipede) this week in our MQ, It wasn't that bad because it was a baby one and wasn't fast as lightning.  

2. Fafonga- I mentioned it last week but Fafongas are kind of like... the death of athleticism. I have to eat so much. To give food, money, etc. in Tonga is a blessing, so if you don't accept it you are kind of disrespecting them. It's funny because my companion talks to the families who fafonga us, and I have to eat which stinks because he's huge and I'm eating more than he is! The families usually give us anything. Honestly half the time I have no idea what's on my plate.  I just have changed my attitude and eat it all. 

3. On a normal day in Tonga we wake up, exercise, (usually lifting weights) shower, personal, companion, language study. Go to our first Fafonga. Go to members houses, or our ward missionary leader, and try and figure out people to teach. We usually go to scheduled activities with families who usually aren't there (flip). Missionary work is so different here in Tonga. One day we walked around our area 3 times! But then randomly we got a phone call that said, "hey we have somebody for you to baptize. So we went to teach a lesson and invited D, a 16 year old boy who's Catholic, to be baptized, but he wasn't able to because his mom would kick him out of the house. 

4. Another person we got to teach was A. She is 18-years-old, and used to be Catholic as well. We taught her the plan of salvation and she said she wanted to get baptized! We don't have a date yet but it's really exciting to get our first baptism in this area. 

5. We "taught" a Fijian lady who only spoke English. It was clear from the start she didn't really want a lesson but to Bible Bash. The funny part is I was going to say the prayer when I hear JESUS BLESSED BE YOUR NAME uttered, I swear 10,000 times, as loud as she could haha. It was a way different lesson but we are going to continue to go back every Wednesday. 

Life is Good in Tonga.

Elder Wilson

Monday, August 29, 2016

HEY.   Life is good here in Tonga, but a lot of stuff has happened since last week. In the MTC we had a branch devotional before we left where everybody in the district says their First Vision discussion and we sing a song. Our first vision went really well and then we sang Folofola Mai a Sisu which was super spiritual. It was really hard to say goodbye to all the districts. I got really close to the Samoan and Fijian districts.

Then we flew from SLC-LAX-AUCK-TONGA. It was super long and stressful and I'm just glad I made it here.  We stayed in a mission complex that they have right across from temple. I did a session in Tongan which was fun and very confusing. I was a part of the biggest intake and biggest transfer in Tonga mission history. There were 35 of us in the intake, including 15 from America and 16 from New Zealand. There are 180 Missionaries in Tonga. We did some introduction stuff and had a meeting and then we met our companions.

My Companion is Elder Talisa. He is from Auckland, New Zealand and jacked to Mars. He could lift me up with one finger.  He played pro rugby in Australia for a couple of years before he came here. He is way cool, super smart and wants to work. I'm in Pea which is kinda central in Tonga. My ward is super cool, which helps a ton with missionary work.

Some Tonga things:

For missionaries they have what are called, Fafongas, which is when members give you all the food in the world and want you to eat it all. I have probably eaten more in the last 5 days than in 6 weeks in the MTC. I eat at my Fafaonga then I fast until the next one so I can eat it all.

I also have more mosquito bites than Gav had dunks and Jorde has 3's last year. Mosquitoes love white skin, I swear.

While my companion and I were touring our area for the first time, we drove up to this huge Tongan wedding reception where the Bishop was. We were outside this huge tent and the Bishop invited us in where there were probably 15 cooked pigs just sitting on all the tables for the reception. Let me tell you, Tongan receptions are amazing, people throwing money everywhere, somebody always talking into some microphone and so much food. It was a crazy intro to Tonga.

But life is good. I'm just trying to get my Tongan down. I really like my area and I'm excited for the things we can do.

Ofa Atu

Go blazers

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Time has gone so quickly here in the MTC. I leave for Tonga on Monday. My district is flying to LAX to Auckland to Tonga and I honestly don't think I've ever been so excited in my life.  I literally only know my testimony, prayer, and some super simple stuff in Tongan, but I know God will help me and if all I can do is testify, then that's all right. I'm just going to work as hard as I can to learn the language and have the spirit with me.

My teachers have been showing us pictures and apparently there are some huge centipedes in Tonga that I had no idea about. But quite honestly, I'm going to a country where there ain't no snakes, scorpions, or spicy food. The church is true.

Oku ou fakamo'oni o Sisu Kalaisi mo Ene Fakalelei. Oku ou ofa 'a e ongoongolelei 'o e Sisu Kalaisi. Oku ou ilo Sisu mate ma'a kitautolu. Te u Feinga malohi i Tonga ki ako'i 'ae ngaahi lea oe Kalaisi.

I love you all. Thank you for your examples in my life.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Hey! Life is good in the MTC, though, I'm not gonna tell a lie. It's kinda the same thing now and I'm just pumped to get to Tonga. Our district gets our flight plans today and I'm SO EXCITED. 

This week Elder Nasilai and I had a great lesson with one of our investigators. We taught lesson 3 and the spirit was so strong. That was the first lesson I told myself, okay no notes. And although I really can only pray and bear testimony in Tongan the lesson went really well. Speaking of that, we have our first skype TRC tonight which I'm way excited for. I've heard it can be hard because you can't really hear them over skype. 

Okay, if you thought I was kidding Tongan singing being incredible, I'm not. My favorite song of all time, (probably a little better than Dame Dolla) is Folofola Mai a Sisu. I sing in twice an hour. My companion may or may not be a wee bit annoyed with me singing it every 5 seconds but that's ok. Please look it up, it's amazing. I literally wrote it my journal twice this week. Sorry journal I was singing my heart out instead of writing. It's just apart of the life style that I love.

Not a whole lot has gone on besides that, I'm just trying to work my hardest to be the best missionary I can. Over the last month I've grown to love the Gospel so much. I can tell the impact it has had in my life and the impact it can have on others. 


Elder Wilson

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Malo E leiei! Life is good here in the MTC. The days are flying now, I can't believe that I'm almost half way done! Dang I'm feeling a top 5.

1. TONGAN SINGING. Okay, really there isn't anything to match it. I hated singing 3 weeks ago except for, "Thats how I beat Shaq," but Elder Fakahua in my district is Elder Adell Fakahua. I'm not kidding he's insane. Elder Manu is Elder Josh Groban Manu. And my hoa, Elder Naselai is Thurl Bailey. I'm the white kid who really doesn't care how bad I sing, but I honestly straight out belt. I pride myself on being the loudest and having no shame.

2. My teachers -  Brother Diel and Brother Tautua'a. They are so sweet. Brother Tautua'a is from Tonga and moved to Utah his Sophmore year in high school. Brother Diel( Diela) served in Tonga a couple years ago. They are super fun and really good teachers.

3. We got a new group in our zone, 24 elders and sisters left and we got 60 new elders and sisters. Its really fun to not be the newbies anymore.  Countries in our zone are Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Madacasgcar, Haitian Creole and ASL. In my group we have Fiji, Samoa, Tongan, with some elders going to different places like Austrailia and Hawaii. 

4. I feel like my Tongan improved a lot this last week. I was in a lesson and a thought came to my mind to bear a testimony of how reading the book of Mormon could change the investigators life. The words and the structure kinda just came to my head and I bore a really good testimony. This week I really felt the Gift of Tongues. Honestly I feel better about teaching in Tongan rather than in English. We do 3 minute practice lessons in English and then in Tongan. And though my Tongan is very simply said, I feel like teaching in English is so weird and the spirit is with me more in Tongan. 

5. I got to host some friends from High School. I hosted Elder Colten Lafontaine and Elder Nejad Arshad. I also saw Colson and Seth Doyle. TIMPVIEW MTC.

Finally, I have been thinking a lot this week about Nephi and how much faith he had. Even though so many things were going wrong in the wilderness and his brothers kept murmuring and persecuting him, he still put his faith in Jesus Christ. Nephi performed some amazing miracles and because of his faith he led his family to the promise land. I testify if we had faith like Nephi all things are possible. I know that even though Tongan is(forgive my language) flipping hard, I can learn Tongan and teach to the people of Tonga.

I love you all, thanks for being great examples.

P.S I'm kinda sensing a warriors blow-up and the Blaze are gonna take it all, please email with thoughts.

P.P.S I got made a district leader

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Hey! Life is still going great in the MTC. Though it's crazy hard, every hour of every day I learn so much. One hour I'm memorizing the missionary purpose and the first vision in Tongan, then the next hour I'm practicing teaching the plan of Salvation in 30 seconds. Though it was way overwhelming at first, I've grown to love spending my time so productively instead of watching Dame Dolla highlights (okay, okay never mind, that's obviously very productive).

For our Sunday devotional the Nashville Tribute band came and sang some Christian Pop. I LOVED it. Throwing it back to 107.5 driving down Timpview Drive at midnight. I don't know if it was MTC appropriate for sure, but I loved it. 

My Tongan is improving and I feel like I've been getting a lot of vocab down, but the sentence structure is unbelievable.  I'm able to kind of bear my testimony and say prayers. The word of the week is "fakatomala" which means repent, and has been said every time anybody in our district has dropped a pen or done anything remotely wrong. I think that we have a TRC next week which scares the daylights out of me, but we'll see what happens.

My teacher has been showing our district pictures of Tonga and what we are going to be doing which makes me so excited. I cannot wait to get back to the country and people I already love and share the gospel. 


Sunday, July 24, 2016

Malo e lelei from the MTC! Life is really good here. It was a pretty eventful week so I'll kind of go over it. 

For the Devotional on Sunday we watched "The Character of Christ," by Elder Bednar, which was amazing. But what was even more amazing is when he walked in the door right after we watched it. He had a Q and A that was super good. I loved it when he said that charity is not something you do it's something you become. 

My hoa(companion) and I are doing great. We are both forgetful people so we have lost a lot of things, but I've gotten a lot more organized as the week has gone on. Lessons are pretty hard for me. I know what I want to say and right now I can kind of dissect what our investigator is asking, but I don't really know how to say it. I now get so jealous of every English speaking missionary because it would be so nice to be able to speak my mind. But Naselai and I work really well together. He speaks Tongan fluently just not in gospel terms. So he translates for me and I can have him translate back into Tongan what I'm trying to say.

                         E. Naselai (my companion), Elder Wilsoni, E. Poulson & Elder Manu

In other news, Elder Zitzmann in my district had bed bugs in his bed so on Thursday we spent the entire day spraying and washing EVERYTHING and we also had to switch rooms. It was kind of nice though because we all got 100 bucks worth of dry cleaning.

Ball in the MTC has been really fun. There are a couple of good ballers in my zone and my district too. Below is my district is in our Tupenus.  Elder Manu to the right of me is 6'4" and 280 and can move like no 6'4" 280 person has ever moved before. Me, Manu, and his companion to the right of him, Poulsen, have yet to lose. I'm also known as the Kyrie of the MTC right now.

My Tongan is progressing. All the gramatical stuff is so crazy to me, but Poulsen and I have been working hard at memorizing vocab. The word of the week is Tika which means sick.  I'm loving life in the MTC and the spirit that is here. 

Ofa atu,
Elder Wilsoni

P.S.  Shoutout to the Congers and Bollingers for the packages. Congers, I absolutly LOVED THE SHASTA. Kind of a shame I don't have a stove or I would ask for loads of Top.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Hey Everybody!

Life is great here in the MTC. My Companion is Elder Nasilai, and he is a Tongan out of Arkansas. His family is probably the only Tongan family in all of Arkansas. We got off to a crazy start. I went through all the procedural things of getting settled in the MTC then went to my district. But Elder Nasilai was no where to be found. Not till after a meeting and dinner did we finally find each other. Apparently his flight was delayed, and on top of that he got the wrong luggage. So my first day in the MTC I got in a van and drove all the way to SLC airport and back in rush hour traffic. But we bonded and he is a great companion. He plays football and Rugby and is very Tongan both looking and culturally which is funny because he's from Arkansas. 

There are two districts of Tongan elders. In my district there are Elder Manu from Bountiful, E. Poulsen from Riverton, E. Fakahu'a from Texas, E. Zitzmann from Vegas and two sisters, Sister Pukari from Papa New Guinea and  Sister Valelahe from Texas. Each Palangi (white person) is partnered with a Poly.  Manu, Nasilai and Fakahu'a are obviously polys and they all know the language. Poulsen, Zitzmann and I are kinda left in the dark because the polys talk a lot in Tongan. Its probably good to be listening to it a lot. I really like the district and it seems like we bonded and became friends fast. As much as I like the MTC, the days are super long. Being super productive for 12-13 hours a day is a big change.

The language is hard but I really like it. My favorite part of my day for sure yesterday was class. I love learning Tongan and I feel really good about picking up what I can in the MTC. Honestly I'm probably motivated most so I can know what the polys in my district are saying. My teacher's name is Brother Diel, he is Palangi and he seems like a great teacher. E. Nasilai and I are teaching our first lesson tonight in Tongan which I'm excited for. My favorite word is Fakalakalaka which means progress.

I run into everybody here. If I'm walking around I see somebody probably at least every 45 seconds and I'm not exageratting. It's the Timpview MTC. 

OFA ATU love you all!
Elder Wilson