Vai's View: A home-teaching companion reunion rekindles a testimony

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  • TheNarrator MONITOR, WA
    May 3, 2012 5:43 p.m.

    Really enjoyed your article. I served in the Northern Indian Mission from 19165-1967. I knew some powerful Polynesian missionaries...Howard Hall, Jimmy Poai, Charles Basso, Ikamano Fifita, Raymond Poole and Theodore Maieda to name a few. Elders Basso and Poole were companions. What great men. Did not know you were in this area. When I was there we could only teach Sioux and other native americans. Elder Basso and his wife are currently serving a mission in Johannesburg, South Africa. Well, just a note to say thanks for your columns and the great light you shine into the lives of the way, do you know David Pasi from Salt Lake? He and I used to dive together in Hawaii when I was stationed there in the early 1970's.

  • hmataele West Valley City, 00
    April 18, 2012 10:44 p.m.

    Great article Vai.

  • Happiest Mom in the World Palmetto, GA
    April 16, 2012 12:48 p.m.

    This morning my husband, a big fan of Vai Sikahema's articles, forwarded this article to me. In 1961 when I was just 9 years old, missionaries from the LDS Church came to my home and taught us. I was the only one to get baptized at that time. Those missionaries may have felt discouraged, but much has come from the seeds sown at that time, and over the years I have wished I could tell them that. After reading this article, I decided to try. I dug out my Baptism Certificate and typed those two names into my search engine. I found some possibilities, decided to be brave, and called. The very first try was a hit!! I actually got to speak to the man who baptized me, and thank him for the gift he gave me that has changed the whole course of my life. And he had the phone number for his companion! So I got off the phone with one and called the other, and got to speak with him, too. I thanked them both, and we each got a little teary-eyed. Thanks for making my day! Your article inspired me to do something meaningful!

  • Gramajane OAKLEY, ID
    April 16, 2012 4:53 a.m.

    There are often the little or larger life uplifting experiences we are blessed with that help us on our path back to Our Father in heaven. I'm so thankful for them and also sorry for the few times I have only hesitated when I questioned if I should make a remark. When we have that doubt it is probably a prompting that we should not say it. Just like with food " when in doubt- don't " eat questionable food or speak a word that is not necessary or kind - even if we think it may be true.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    April 15, 2012 8:18 p.m.

    Vai, thank you for the weekly shot in the arm. Great story!

  • hc1951 Bend, OR
    April 15, 2012 8:21 a.m.

    Not so bold as Vai, when I finally reconnected with my Church College of New Zealand Religion class teacher, Lloyd Anderson (he was also my Bishop at the time), I was invited to his 50th wedding anniversary & all I could do was put a little "thank you" in the guest book. There were simply no words adequate to express my gratitude for the anchor he gave my soul! We are so fortunate to have the programs in the Church that bind us together - and to the Lord.

  • Heart and Mind BUENA VISTA, VA
    April 15, 2012 6:08 a.m.

    Hello Heater,

    What might have happened if someone years ago had warned that patriarch that affected Brother Klein, to be more careful and sensitive when he talked about Jewish topics? It might have saved the Klein family from a decade of inactivity. So if the Spirit gives us a prompting to offer suggestions, kindly couched, should we remain silent?

    Is there much difference between what you saw in Orem Parent’s or Aztexas’ comments and your own posting? Their comments were positive and their suggestions respectful. I would hope that Vai, if he is as humble and wonderful as I suppose he is, would be glad for kindly-given suggestions to slightly improve his wonderful writings in the future.

    For example, the next time he starts to write about a “rivalry,” Orem Parent’s comment might be brought back to his mind and he will inspect his writing tone and double-check if his tenor is what he really wanted to use to most effectively make his point. And he might be prompted to better grammar check and edit a more important writing in the future, which might save him some unknown, future embarrassment.

  • CooginIN Southern, IN
    April 14, 2012 9:08 p.m.

    I loved this story! Thank you for sharing. It's really true that we may not have any idea of the impact we may have on another person's life. What a rewarding experience for both of you!

  • John E Provo, UT
    April 14, 2012 3:54 p.m.

    I love this article!! I admire Vai for his seeking out those who have contributed to his life--we need to do more of that. Even cards and notes, or phone calls can do a lot. But--he must have been really listening to the spirit to be where he was, at the time his friend needed him. This story is a wonderful example of the Lord being mindful of the needs of all of his children, and the importance of both of those men to listen to the spirit at the right times in both of their lives. Thanks you for sharing this Vai!

  • SLMG Murtoa Australia, Victoria
    April 14, 2012 1:53 p.m.

    Awesome as usual, Thank you for sharing.

  • Nita hamilton, ontario, 00
    April 14, 2012 12:18 p.m.

    What a heartwarming story. I used to have, MSNBC as my homepage, but just recently changed it to the Deseret News. Now I start my day with uplifting stories, news etc. We never know what kind of an impact that we make upon others. This story illustrates, for us, the importance of being kind and open with each other. The church, helps us to do so, step by step. Thank you, Deseret News, for your thoughtful articles,and content.

  • BYU blue through and through OREM, UT
    April 14, 2012 11:08 a.m.

    Vai, thank you for sharing such an incredible experience. What a great reminder that sometimes it's the little acts of kindness - like reaching out to an old friend - that have the biggest impact. I really enjoy reading your blog for your perspectives on sports as well as more personal things like this. I'm getting ready for a nephew's baptism as I write this and your article helped me feel a little closer to the Spirit than I was a few short minutes ago. Thanks again.

  • CaroLee Bell Arscott HURRICANE, UT
    April 14, 2012 8:36 a.m.

    Aloha- Beautiful story....Thank you for sharing....This touched my heart. I grew up without the Priesthood in my home and there were many faithful that influenced my life too. Before I turned 50,I wanted to thank 50 people that made a differnce in my life.... I had MANY more than that number that I thanked....I have a testimony that our Heavenly Father knows each of us individually and places people in our paths to help us obtain that which He knows we can. AND your story shared was one of what a blessing it is to show our gratitude too....Mahalo for all you do.

  • Heater BALA CYNWYD, PA
    April 13, 2012 11:44 p.m.

    Orem Parent: "... Vai you are at your best when you leave the rivalry out of your stories. "

    You only want good news, feel-good, warm & fuzzy stories. Frankly, what makes Vai enormous popular is that he does from time to time tell us EXACTLY how he feels on some issues - even unpopular ones. Why must you insist on painting Vai into a corner and limit him to only the subjects that suit you?

    Aztexas: We get it. Vai made an error and his editor missed it. You're invited to a gourmet meal but all you see is the lint in the linen napkins.

    The rest of the posters saw this for what it is - a glimpse into an extraordinary experience Vai allowed us to witness.

  • t702 Las Vegas, NV
    April 13, 2012 10:31 p.m.

    Terrific stuff Vai...thanks for sharing

  • Red Salt Lake City, UT
    April 13, 2012 9:24 p.m.


    You are the best. I love to hear you tell a story. You are a great example to all of us.

    Keep it coming!

  • aztexas Houston, TX
    April 13, 2012 9:01 p.m.

    I always enjoy your column, and I, too, have had many positive home teaching experiences. I would like to suggest, though, that you or your editor should know better than "to take he and Mary out to dinner." I'm sure you wouldn't say "take he out to dinner"; you'd more likely say "take him out to dinner," right?

  • gnrl39 South Jordan, UT
    April 13, 2012 6:46 p.m.

    Thanks Vai, I anxiously await your blog and am never disappointed. Brought to mind my assignment as a young man with my home teaching companion in the old Boise 4th ward 59 years ago. Wayne Peterson, who owned a local auto dealership. I was a young man whose father wasn't active and your story reminded me of all the men in the ward who helped me stay involved in the church.

  • Orem Parent Orem, UT
    April 13, 2012 4:38 p.m.

    Thanks for the story. Vai you are at your best when you leave the rivalry out of your stories. Please keep the great stories coming!

    My first home teaching companion just passed away. I was a 14 year old young man assigned to go with one of the brothers in the ward. It is amazing what I remember from those visits. Without realizing it, the older companions are teaching so many lessons to the teenagers. The teenagers are like sponges. They might not say a lot but they soak it all in.

    Thanks again!

  • supainthehills Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 13, 2012 4:21 p.m.

    Vai -

    Thank you for sharing another one of your great experiences. I read your blog often, but this one touched a very tender part of my soul. I too feel such profound gratitude for all those that have inspired and changed the course of my life through their examples and sacrifices. Those moments have changed so many things for the better. I'm truly grateful for your good example and for the way you strive to use your minutes of each day. Keep holding up the light the way that you do!

  • LiberalEastCoastMember Parkesburg, PA
    April 13, 2012 3:39 p.m.

    Hopefully the Mets lost the game.

    Seriously, great story wonderfully told.

  • AZRods Maricopa, AZ
    April 13, 2012 2:51 p.m.

    I know Vai has got to be swamped with requests to speak and visit somewhere every week.
    I'm amazed at how much he must get done on a given week or month.
    Makes me feel lazy....and I'm not!

  • One Angry Salebarn Worker Madison, SD
    April 13, 2012 2:31 p.m.

    Love your stuff Via!

  • So. Cal Reader San Diego, CA
    April 13, 2012 1:57 p.m.

    I loved this update! My father has always been active in the church, but my testimony of home teaching was also fostered when I went home teaching with an older gentleman (not my dad) who taught me the importance of consistently serving & ministering to others. As you so lovingly provided thanks to Bro. Marty Klein, I owe a lot to my home teaching companion-Bro.Bernarr Humpherys. Vai, you bring joy to so many because of your big heart. Who else whould have gone to such great extremes to "reconnect" with an influential person in your life as a youth. Good stuff!

  • Aloha Saint George Saint George, Utah
    April 13, 2012 12:25 p.m.

    Thanks for the story. The church says for someone to come back into activity; they need three things. The first one was a friend. I sometimes go to church wondering what they can do for me, but it's definitely a two way street. Thanks for sharing.