Elder Inoke Foto Kupu, Tongan Area Seventy, passes away in New Zealand

Elder Kupu, 63, who was serving as an Area Seventy from Tonga, died on Saturday, Aug. 13, in Auckland, New Zealand

Elder Inoke Kupu, an Area Seventy from Tonga, died from cancer on Saturday, Aug. 13, in Auckland, New Zealand.

Elder Kupu was sustained to the Eighth Quorum of the Seventy in April 2019 general conference and was working as the leader and member support coordinator for the Church in Tonga. 

“We join with so many who love and respect Elder Kupu, in mourning his passing and praying for his dear wife, Moana, and their family,” Elder K. Brett Nattress, a General Authority Seventy and president of the Pacific Area, told Pacific Newsroom. “As followers of Jesus Christ, we are comforted by the promise of a glorious resurrection and a joyous family reunion one day.”

In September 2021, Elder Kupu presided and conducted at the groundbreaking ceremonies for the Neiafu Tonga Temple.

Elder ‘Inoke Kupu, an Area Seventy, left, greets King Tupou VI at the groundbreaking ceremony for a new temple in Neiafu on the island of Vava’u, Tonga, on Sept. 11. 2021. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Also as an Area Seventy, Elder Kupu was instrumental in working with government, faith and aid groups to bring humanitarian relief to thousands of people impacted by the January 2022 volcanic eruption and tsunami

Since then, he worked tirelessly to help Tongan families and communities to rebuild their homes, villages and livelihoods and to coordinate the Church’s efforts with government and communities responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Elder Kupu was greatly admired by all who associated with him. From senior Tongan government leaders all the way to the children in our congregations, for his gentle and faithful way in which he demonstrated deep love for his family, his church, his country and his God,” Elder Nattress said.

Inoke Foto Kupu was born in Ha’alaufuli, Tonga, to Vilai Kupu and Salote Fatai Naulu. He married Moana M. Fatani, and they have four children.

He was the principal of the Liahona High School in Tonga before he and his wife served as mission leaders of the Zambia Lusaka Mission from 2016 to 2019.

Elder Kupu is a former stake president, stake presidency counselor, bishop, high councilor, national director of public affairs, stake Young Men president and missionary in the Bolivia La Paz Mission. 

Elder Inoke Kupu, President Tali and Chief Secretary Edgar Cocker wait for the arrival of the Tongan Prime Minister at the groundbreaking for the Sopu Stake Center, in Tonga, in May 2021 | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
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