News Story

French Polynesian Woman Expands Her Opportunities, Blesses Her Family, After Self-Reliance Course

Marau Taputuarai’s career soared after completing a self-reliance course provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and choosing to go back to university so that she could get a better job.

After a one-year contract as a counselor at SEFI, the National Job Centre of French Polynesia, Marau, of Tahiti, attended the self-reliance course in her ward (congregation).


“I was jobless, so I decided to take the self-reliance course in our ward. After completing the course and with the support of my husband, I enrolled in university to start a bachelor’s degree in economics and management in 2015.  It was not easy; I faced many difficulties because I had weaknesses and gaps in lots of subjects. I had to deal with family life, my husband and our four children, my church responsibilities and school studies.

“I remember a time when I was at my lowest and thought I would never succeed. I cried so much that week, just after general conference. I recalled listening to a talk from Elder Yamashita and it was as if the Lord was speaking to me directly, comforting me by saying that God will ‘make weak things become strong.’ This was a defining moment for me as I felt His presence by my side.

“Many times, I felt overwhelmed, yet I have always relied on my Heavenly Father and my Saviour, Jesus Christ. Whenever I thought I couldn't understand or couldn't get there, I prayed for help. Then, I worked twice as hard and continued to persevere. After three years of study, I obtained my bachelor’s degree and it is with gratitude that I deeply thank my Heavenly Father.”

But there were more blessings in store for Marau and her family.

“The greatest miracle of my life happened in 2017. I was still studying at university when my husband decided to become a member of the Church. He had a very hard heart when it came to the gospel, but after much fasting and fervent prayer, he finally joined the Church. To add to my joy, all my children, Raihere 16, Arai 13, Owen 12, Temeehu 9, were also baptised on the same day.”

In 2018, only a few months after her graduation, SEFI called looking for a candidate to replace an employee who was going on maternity leave. When they learned that Marau had just obtained her bachelor’s degree, they immediately offered her a better position. For the last two years, she has been working as an executive and head of the integration unit for disabled workers at SEFI.

“I know that getting this job was the work of my Heavenly Father.”

“I am overwhelmed with gratitude for everything the gospel and the Church are providing for our benefit. I testify that studying is one of the keys to achieving self-reliance. Education is the key to success, and intelligence is the glory of God. I know the Church self-reliance course is a God-inspired program and I am privileged to have taken it.”

Former Church President Gordon B. Hinkley taught, “We have a responsibility and a challenge to take our places in the world of business, science, government, medicine, education and every other worthwhile and constructive vocation. We have an obligation to train our hands and minds to excel in the work of the world for the blessing of all mankind.”

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