News Release

Pacific Public Affairs Leaders Gather in Hamilton, New Zealand


Every two years, the Public Affairs Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Pacific Area gathers for a multi-day training. This year, all leaders, directors, and senior missionary couples gathered in Hamilton, New Zealand from 22nd to 25th January to receive training on the topic “One by One”. Countries represented included, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Cook Islands, Kiribati, New Caledonia, Tahiti, Vanuatu, Tonga, Samoa, and American Samoa.

Highlights from the seminar included attendance at the Hamilton New Zealand Temple, a tour of the new Matthew Cowley Pacific Church History Centre, a visit to the newly built Stake Centre at Temple View, and a visit by Pacific Area President, Elder O. VIncent Haleck.

Elder Haleck, who was sustained as a General Authority Seventy on April 2nd, 2011, attended for a portion of the training and spoke about the roles and responsibilities of Public Affairs leaders in the Pacific Area to reach out to each of their respective communities.

Kim Woodbury, Public Affairs Area Relations Manager based in Salt Lake City at Church Headquarters also attended the seminar. Her training was valuable in helping the leaders, directors, and senior missionaries gain a broader vision of Public Affairs.

Church apostle Elder David A. Bednar’s book "One by One" inspired the theme of the seminar. In his book, Elder Bednar focused on a pattern that the Lord uses to bless His people: He works with them on an individual basis, one by one.

All in attendance were strengthened as they participated and shared ideas and experiences from their respective communities.

Elder Robert Dudfield, National Director of Public Affairs for Australia outlined the objectives of the Public Affairs Department, commenting, “One of our key roles in Public Affairs is to show others that we love, follow and seek to emulate Jesus Christ. This involves working with community, media and government organisations as well as leaders of other faiths. We seek to bring to the table things that will strengthen faith, open doors for the Church, correct misunderstandings and serve within the community.”

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