Sunday, August 23, 2015

So many beaches - so few weekends...

Talofa! Every Friday night, 6 pm, Brent and I have a date at the Samoan Temple.  I have been attending the temple for 45+ years and have always enjoyed it, but now I finally feel like I am figuring it out.  It is a pleasure to escape from the world for just a few hours and focus on the things the things of eternity.  The temple has truly been a blessing in our lives and the lives of our family. We had a FHE lesson by one of the temple missionaries a couple of weeks ago on symbols in the temple.  She referred to an article “Why This Symbol Appears10,000 Times in the San Diego Temple” that is available on Google. (What did we do before Google???)  I thought it was really interesting and recommend it. 

LDS Samoan Temple
President & Sister Tolman's Farewell Dinner
(Tolmans are 3rd & 4th from Left - front row)
(President and Sister Saunders 2nd row 1st & 2nd from Left)
Last Sunday night we learned that President and Sister Tolman were being released for medical reasons.  We did not realize that President Tolman had been ill for 9 months.  I knew he didn’t feel good but I did not realize how serious it was.  We had a farewell potluck dinner Thursday night with lots of yummy Samoan dishes prepared especially for the Tolmans.  Elder Avei brought his Ukulele and closed the evening with the traditional Samoan farewell song.  Tuesday Tom and Wendy Saunders, a couple serving in American Samoa, arrived and will be serving as interim Mission President.  They are such wonderful people I would be happy if they served until we finished our mission. 

Yesterday (Sat) Brent and I had decided that we should stay home and get some things caught up here.  That was until Sister Jacobs put out an invite to the Black Sands Beach.  Dang it!  So many beaches and so few weekends…The temptation was too great!  We packed a lunch and met the Jacobs, Schafermeyers, Gillettes, Drs. Larsen and Orchard, and Sister Fahrmer and we were off on another great adventure.  Never did I imagine that a mission could be so much fun!  We had this exquisite beach to ourselves.  We snorkeled (Yes, I even snorkeled!) swam, visited, ate, swam some more – it was a most delightful day!  All I can say is that I must have been pretty good in the pre-existence to land here J  To top off a perfect day we all met at my favorite restaurant and had a farewell dinner for the Stonehockers who will be leaving this next week.

Black Sands  Beach
Today (Sunday) we attended our Samoan ward’s sacrament meeting.  I love to go just to hear their singing!  They definitely know how to praise the Lord through song. I then went to primary and played the piano – the kids are amazing singers too.  I love to hear the 10 year old boys sing – they are the best singers of all!  We then attended the English Ward’s sacrament meeting where the singing is not nearly as good.  We can all learn a lesson from praising the Lord from our Samoan brothers and sisters.


  1. Thank you for sharing your ecperiences. I enjoy reading them.

  2. You certainly are in Paradise...............

  3. Thanks for letting us know what you are up to. I can tell from your posts that you are having a delightful time and a spiritual experience. I am envious of the singing you get to hear...wish we had such enthusiasm in our wards here in Vegas!! Love you, Janet and Harry

  4. Wow, swimming sounds wonderful. I'm sure you earn your weekend (Saturday) relaxation!

  5. I'm thinking I'll put in for your mission when Jared and I are ready to serve together! Sounds wonderful.

  6. Sounds like a much-deserved wonderfully restful day!