News Release

Baptism by Immersion changes a man's heart

A member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from Kosrae Micronesia, shares his conversion story.

ELKENA HADLEY (District President in Kosrae, Micronesia)

 President Elkena Hadley participated in an area Priesthood leadership training in January 2023 with several other leaders throughout the Micronesia North Asia area.  While there, he was asked a few questions about Kosrae.

Have you seen a growth in the Church in your area?

He said, “Well, not too much.  We did have two young men get baptized recently and ordained to the office of a Deacon.   They started passing the sacrament recently to our members.  We have three full time missionaries on the island that are helping with all the Priesthood ordinances.  Our congregation is mostly women and children from the very young to the older sisters.  There are non-members still investigating and more coming to church all of the time.   Last week, we had one mother come with her six children.  Currently, we have no baptisms scheduled.”

After giving us some facts about Kosrae, President Hadley wanted to share his conversion story!  It’s hard for him to believe that he even joined the church.   His mother was Protestant and read the Bible.  He had seen the missionaries before with their name tags.  They tried to teach him the gospel then, but his father wouldn’t let him join the Church or even become close to the members or missionaries.   So, he forgot about it.   One day, after he was married and had two children, he and his wife were waiting outside to pick up their 2 children from preschool.  Two missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints walked by and introduced themselves.  One of them was from Micronesia.  He and his wife decided to listen to their invitation to learn more.   He read a scripture in the Bible about the need to get baptized by immersion.   The thought about being baptized by immersion was new to him.  He said, “I, myself, when I found out that baptism is important, it started to give me a feeling.  I don’t mean that I’m a good person or perfect person, but as soon as I heard this, I did my best to investigate the Church.”    He and his wife accepted the gospel and were baptized along with their two daughters on March 13, 2001.  Chuckling, he explained that he would represent his mom, and became the first one in his family to join the Church.  Elkena and his wife were later sealed together as a family in the Manilla Philippines’ temple.  Describing his experience there he said, “When I entered the temple, it was a quiet and nice place and different from other places.  The quiet sounds of music there is really good.”  A couple of missionaries tried to teach his mother the gospel.  (By this time, his father had passed away.)  When they asked her about being willing to get baptized, she jumped up and said, “I am already baptized!”  He has remained close to his mother even though she still has not chosen to be baptized.  President Hadley stated: “Jesus Christ gave us a blue print that we all need to follow.  In the Bible, it says that we need to follow the example of Jesus Christ.  Baptism by immersion is the way to follow Him.  I try my best to be a good member of this Church.  I’m not a perfect man, but when I start learning from the Bible about Jesus, I try my best to be more like Him.  I know that if I try, I can be happy.”

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