The Newsroom Blog

#LIGHTtheWORLD: Day 2 in the Pacific 

Latter-day Saint missionaries in Wellington, New Zealand joined the "Light the World" Christmas inititiave yesterday by finding new ways to honour their parents at a local family history centre.

Day 2 in the "Light the World" Christmas service advent calendar, as found at, was all about honouring parents, as Jesus Christ honoured his parents.


Elder Michael Woods and Sister Lois Woods are Record Preservation missionaries with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, based in Wellington.


They volunteer 40 hours per week at Archives New Zealand, supporting efforts to digitize and preserve records for future generations. 

The Archives NZ headquarters is one of the buildings damaged in the recent earthquake, and has been closed.

Prior to their mission, the Woods were family history directors in their home congregation in the United States.

These days they are using their reseach expertise in New Zealand to help others learn about and record the stories of their ancestors. And yesterday, they helped young missionaries from the Church, who are also serving in Wellington.

During the session yesterday, the young missionaries were asked to think about one of their ancestors.

Elder Lefanoga Alofipa from Samoa chose his grandmother, "because she was the one who motivated me to graduate from high school and finish a mission."


Elder Mark Hornberger said, "Today was about honouring our parents and ancestors. I came to the Family History Centre to look up some of my ancestors and read through some of their stories."   

"I want to become the best person that I can be to honour them," Hornberger said. :As I have now  learned about where I have come from I can now look to what I can become." 

Elder Clinton Briggs said: "Benjamin Franklin Johnson is one of my ancestors and he assisted the prophet Joseph Smith. I found out today that I am also related to Elder Woods through that lineage."

Elder Sione Ahokovi said: "Today we were taught how to expand our family tree and I actually found some of my ancestors and connected them to myself."

Another missionary, Elder Dallin Huso, found that Barak Obama is his 11th cousin.

Newsroom contributor: Tania Torea.

Browse the Blog

About The Blog: This blog is managed and written by staff of the Public Affairs Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The information here is reliable and accurate but should not necessarily be viewed as official statements from the Church. The purpose of this blog is to provide journalists, bloggers, and the public with additional context and information regarding public issues involving the Church. For official news releases and statements from the Church, visit

Style Guide Note: When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online Style Guide.