As reported in the news recently, the Kingdom of Tonga has once again experienced volcanic activity (undersea) in the area, but this time the volcanic eruption and resultant tsunami was significant – Saturday 15 January, late afternoon. There was much flooding on the northern coastal margin of the mainland (swamped residential areas) and some of the smaller neighbouring islands totally swamped.
Currently there are four brothers and sisters living in Tonga, Bro Dicky and Bro Ralph living on the mainland (Tongatapu) and Bro Manase and his wife Sis Talitha and three children, living on an outlying island (Utu Vavaʻu). It is understood that Sis Talitha is currently doing some seasonal work in Australia. Brother Dicky has wife Lisia and three children.
Around 2pm on Saturday 15 January, contact was made with Bro Dicky. He reported that heavy clouds of volcanic ash covered the mainland on Friday. He also mentioned that due to the larger volcanic eruption they had received a tsunami warning on Saturday, to take precaution and stay away from coastal zones. Both Bro Dicky and Bro Ralph live more inland, away from the coastal margin.
Late afternoon on Saturday, Tonga received much of the tsunami flooding and as a result all communication networks went out of service and is currently the status quo, but remedial work is now in progress. With communication networks down, we have not been able to make any further contact with any of the brothers or sisters in Tonga.
New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade reported Sunday 3pm that
“there were no official reports of deaths or injuries in Tonga, but communications remain limited”.
It appears that the Island of Utu Vavaʻu, where Bro Manase and family live, was also less affected by tsunami flooding.
We are continuing to attempt to make contact with our brothers and sisters to understand their wellbeing and needs. We ask that our brothers and sisters of Tonga be remembered in prayer.”