News Release

Pangasinan Media Tours MTC, Temple Grounds and Family History Center

Members of the local media from Pangasinan got to know The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints better when they met with Elder Taniela B. Wakolo, General Authority Seventy; Elder AretemioMaligon and Elder Raul Villanueva, Area Seventy, and toured the Philippines Area office complex in Quezon City on Thursday, 20 June.


“You are friends of the Church," said Elder Wakolo to the 13 guests present. "We would like to build our friendship with you and people of other faith."

Following his message, the visiting journalists and reporters had one hour to ask their questions to Elder Wakolo. Most of them became piqued by his testimony of himself being baptized at age 27 as well as the video presentation about the Church’s humanitarian services and missionary efforts, with a special highlight on the temple.

Elder Wakolo explained that everything they do in the Church is geared towards helping Latter-day Saints receive the highest ordinances (sacred services; Christian promises) and blessings that regular temple attendance brings. 

The doctrine of eternal marriage endeared April Montes-Bravo, Philippine Information  AgencyPangasinan Center manager; and Sarah Cayabyab, DZMQ Radyo Pilipinas-Dagupan news reporter, who both have friends who are long-time members of the Church.

“I was particularly curious about why my friends’ marriages are done at the temple in Manila instead of nearby chapels in the province,” Bravo said. “And I now know why.”

Cayabyab saw the uniqueness and the difference of temple marriages from church weddings.

“May forever pala!” she exclaimed. [Forever exists!]

“When a couple marries each other, they could extend far beyond ‘till death do us part’ and be together for ‘time and eternity.”

Upon knowing the sacrifices the missionaries go through, Minnie Caburnay-Alcaide, DWPR Radyo Asenso, said, “I thought it is prohibited to invite them. This time, now that I know that we could invite them, I could do my part (to have them over).”

Josie Sarmiento, Bombo Radyo-Dagupan Officer-in-Charge, agreed with Alcaide and praised the discipline and dedication that volunteer missionaries have for setting aside their education, career, and family just to serve the Lord.

After the luncheon and meeting with Elder Wakolo, the media guests’ first leg of the tour was the Philippines Missionary Training Center. Elder Raul Villanueva led the group in the tour and showed them the living quarters, barbershop, gym, laundry area and other rooms that missionaries frequent during their 19 or 40-day stay at the MTC.

Afterward, the guests visited the family history center where Felvir Ordinario, Area Family History Manager, explained about genealogy, records preservations, and significance of family history work to Latter-day Saints.

The experience left a positive impression on Josie Sarmiento. “What I remember the most from the tour was that we could preserve the records of ancestors,” she said.

Liezel Basa- Iñigo, Manila Bulletin correspondent for the Ilocos and Cagayan Valley Regions, also shared the same sentiment.

“I am gladdened to hear about family history. It helps a lot of people. It is a great thing that relatives could be connected through this activity.”

The last leg of the tour was the Manila Philippines Temple grounds, where guests learned more about temples, their importance to the Church and the ongoing construction of the Urdaneta Philippines Temple.

Overall, the visitors were grateful for the tour. Sarmiento shared that it was a valuable learning experience. Iñigo described it as “refreshing” while Alcaide felt the area office was “heavenly.” For Bravo, the tour was “unforgettable.”

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