Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Wed March 18th, 2015

This is an email we received from Shauna's cousin that knows the Mission President in the Solomon Islands:


The Lord had to be watching out for your cousin, Elder Beynon, and all the Missionaries, as I had just heard about our Elders in Tanna late yesterday.  Then the first thing this morning I hear from you via Shannon and it is about Elder Beynon!! Remember there are no coincidences. Yesterday the Mission President's wife called and told me that Elder Beynon had called and told the Mission President that all the missionaries were safe.  The mission president told them to pack their bags because he was chartering a jet to go get them.  Later in the day, the President met up with the cell company people, who were also chartering a jet to go fix all their towers in Tanna, as there had been no cell service for several days because the cells towers were down.  The president related the phone call from Elder Beynon and they said to him that was totally impossible as there was no cell service and all their towers were down.  The mission president just pointed to his name badge and stated I wonder how that happened... The Lord watches out for his missionaries wherever they are throughout the world and miracles happen everyday--this is a prime example of Gods tender mercies to all of us as we all try to do what is right in our every day life...

These are all the church updates about the cyclone:


Wed March 18, 2015

All five sisters serving on Tanna arrive safely to Port Vila and were at the mission home with President and Sister Brewer. He said “all of them were in very good spirits and looked just like they did last time I saw them.”

The food purchased by the church and flown to Tanna was delivered to the care of Branch President Moukura of the White Grass branch. The District President was simply too far away.

The 6 Tanna elders as well as the assistants to the president will return tomorrow. The schedule is to load the food on the plane in Port Vila at 10am, depart at 11am, arrive 12pm and depart by 1pm, back to Port Vila about 2pm. The missionaries will turn this second plane load of food over to the President Moukura.

Power has been restored to the Mission Office and the power company is currently working on the street the Mission Home is on. President Brewer is hoping to have power to the Mission Home as early as tomorrow.


Tues March 17, 2015

Yesterday two Latter-day Saint missionaries based on the Vanuatu island of Santo took a commercial boat to the island of Ambae where there are six missionaries. As communication channels have been down, no contact has yet been made with these missionaries. We expect to hear a report later today or early tomorrow. The Santo missionaries are carrying emergency supplies to assist those suffering from the effects of cyclone Pam.

Another two missionaries from Port Vila are flying to Tanna on a small plane today which has been chartered by the LDS Church. They are taking aid to the people in need there and they will also transport missionaries back to Port Vila.


Mon March 16th 2015

Within the last hour the Vanuatu Port Vila Mission President, Larry Brewer, made contact with missionary leaders on the island of Tanna.  The missionary leaders confirmed that all 11 missionaries are accounted for and safe. The Church is chartering a small plane tomorrow from Port Vila to Tanna. Two missionaries will be on board with food and other supplies to give much needed relief to those suffering from the effects of Cyclone Pam. The plane will also be used to bring the 11 missionaries on Tanna back to Port Vila.


Mon March 16th 2015

Latter-day Saint leaders in Vanuatu confirmed this morning that missionaries serving on Efate, Santo, Malekula and Gaua islands are accounted for and safe. Efforts are continuing in establishing contact with missionaries on other outer islands.

Church leaders in Port Vila purchased food and other emergency supplies yesterday which are being distributed to Church members and others who are sheltering at Church buildings, as well as others who have moved back to their properties in order to start rebuilding their homes.

Several Church’s Pacific Area Office employees in Auckland are flying to Port Vila tomorrow to support local leaders in meeting the needs of people affected by the cyclone. This includes setting up partnerships with other churches and agencies so aid can flow as freely and quickly to those in need.


Sun March 15, 2015


Reports from Latter-day Saint leaders in Fiji and Tuvalu confirmed today that all missionaries in the Fiji Suva Mission are accounted for and safe following Cyclone Pam’s destructive impact on the weekend.

In the neighbouring Vanuatu Port Vila Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, all missionaries on the main island of Efate are in Port Vila and are safe.

Due to communication lines still being down to the outer islands of the Vanuatu archipelago, contact with missionaries serving in these locations has not yet been made.  Efforts are ongoing to make contact with and support these missionaries, Church members and others in these outer islands.


Sun March 15th 2015

Dear Concerned Family and Priesthood Leaders,

This is coming from the Pacific Area Office. We know there are many concerned parents and leaders wanting an update about their missionary. Here is a brief report on what we know concerning our missionaries serving in the Vanuatu Port Villa Mission:

- All missionaries serving in New Caledonia, Solomon Islands and the Island of Efate where the capital city of Port Vila is located are safe and accounted for.

- Communications with the outer islands have not been established. All missionaries were instructed 2-3 days prior to the arrival of the cyclone to seek shelter in the safest building on their island a concrete building which is going to be either a church, hospital or school. We have every reason to believe all of our missionaries are safe, but we have not been able to confirm that yet.  There is no phone or internet/email contact with the outer islands. We are hoping to establish contact within the next few days.

- The islands to the north of Efate/Port Vila were spared a direct hit from the cyclone, these islands include Ambae,  Malekula and Santo. While we have yet to receive a report, we have every reason to believe the people of these islands and our missionaries did not experience the devastation reported on Efate.

- The island of Tanna did take a direct hit from the cyclone. Prior to the storm our 11 missionaries were all moved to the westside, the safer side, of the island in the care of a local priesthood leader who took them to a school official who welcomed the missionaries into his safe building. We have not yet had contact with anyone on Tanna.

- This morning local time we held a conference call with the Mission President, President Brewer, as well as a highly placed government official who is one of our local priesthood leaders in Port Vila, our Area Seventy for Vanuatu, our Area President, the Director of Temporal Affairs as well as Welfare staff for the Pacific Area.  The safety of our missionaries was the first topic of discussion, followed by the role the church will play in providing relief to those affect by Cyclone Pam.

Pacific Area Offices

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