Sunday, May 4, 2014

Friday, April 18th

Today is Good Friday. It is a very sacred holiday in Tonga. In America, people don’t stop to appreciate what happened on Thursday night and Friday before Easter Sunday. Here they have parades through the villages where they have a man carry the cross and the people in the village all dress in black as a sign of mourning. I am really grateful that we don’t focus on the cross, but it is sad that we don’t stop to ponder the Atonement more. In so many ways, the Tongan people have their priorities in the right place.

Sadly, all of the senior missionaries got together and went to the beach. Well, it wasn’t really sad, we had a great time, but I did feel a little guilty. Although we all spent last night in the temple, so that should count. It is against the law for any of the stores to be open and all of the other churches had services today, so the island was very quiet. Not many people were out and about until later in the afternoon. We went to a private beach, owned by President Nau, one of Alan’s old companions. He has given us permission to go there any time we want. There are beautiful shells that wash up on the beach there, so we had fun collecting shells and some of the missionaries went snorkeling. It was a beautiful day and it felt so good to just relax and watch the waves roll in. We all deserved a day off!