Taufa family shows faith in wake of LDS missionary's death

President Elini Kinikini of the Tongan North Stake and Bishop Siosaia Tu’itupou of the Riverside 2nd Ward were invited to the living room where they somberly and directly shared the tragic news that their second child and second missionary son, Elder Siosiua Andrew Taufa, had lost his life in Guatemala earlier that evening. Sulieti let out a cry that brought their daughters running into the room, but Ivan remained stoic and steadied himself by bracing the armrest of the couch.

With the help of their priesthood leaders, he calmed his family’s tears and their anguish.

“I didn’t know what else to do but be a rock for my little family,” Ivan told me.

They gathered and knelt in prayer, with Bishop Tu’itupou offering a heartfelt and solemn prayer in Tongan.

A few hours later, at 6 a.m., without a wink of sleep, the Taufas attended the Salt Lake Temple, where they had been married nearly 23 years ago, for an early morning session.

“Our son had offered his life as a sacrifice and we went to petition the Lord for his grace, his mercy, his healing power through the Atonement, determined to offer whatever else he required at our hands for his sake,” Ivan told me. “We left that morning more soothed and more at peace with our son’s passing.”

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