Tevita Vaikona

     My full name is Tevita Fotofili Vaikona. I grew up on one of the small Islands in Tonga call Uiha. After high school on Tonga’s big island, I had an opportunity to study at the Fiji Bible College of Theology and Evangelism. I then decided to come to the United States for seminary and attended Asbury Theological Seminary in Kentucky, before transferring to Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley for my Master of Divinity. I later earned my Doctor of Ministry from Drew University in New Jersey.    

     I met my lovely wife, Ofaloto at the church in Monterey. We both knew God’s call upon us to be ministers. We are blessed by our two children Afu Gloria, and Grace Hau’alofa’ia Vaikona. Through our ministry of more than 15yrs, God has been good to us all the time and God is great every day!

     Pastor Tevita came to the Stockton area in 2017 to serve the Linden UMC and begin a Tongan language ministry, which eventually found a home here at Holy Cross. Now he is the full time Pastor of Holy Cross. His winning spirit and relational style has helped many Tongans coming to this region find their faith home with us. In his own words: God is good, all the time, God is great, everyday! From our perspective we wonder, and question a lot what is going on in our life and our community. But from God’s perspective, we see that God always keeps His promise, and is always present with us. 

  • Wayne Mock-Music Director

         Wayne has been leading the music program at Holy Cross since 2016. Along with providing worship music from a variety of keyboards, he also directs the sanctuary choir and prepares soloists to share their talents.

         He has been playing for churches since he was 14 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from the University of Montana. In his words, “Music is a primary source of joy and inspiration to me.” 

         He has been with his partner Rudy for 11 years and together they enjoy their time with grandchildren.

  • Temple Gallagher-Office Administrator

         Temple’s administrative responsibilities include giving oversight to the maintenance and development of the facilities and management of the office. Temple has worked at Holy Cross since June of 2002.  Temple loves traveling, cooking, sewing, gardening, and spending time with her family and friends. Temple has chaired many committees at the Church and is currently the chairperson for the Membership Care Committee and the church Treasurer.

         Working in the church office all these years, has lead Temple to volunteer in the community. She currently is the Vice-President of Family Promise of San Joaquin. Family promise gives hope and encouragement to families experiencing homelessness.  Every child deserves a home. Temple's other adventures include: the church treasurer for St. Mark's UMC and involved with the Lodi Moose Lodge and the women's group.

         Temple has been married to John since 1996. They have one son who graduated from UOP with his Masters in 2023. 

  • Chanphaeng Pravong-Nursery Attendant

         My name is Chanphaeng Plavong, I am the Sunday Nursery Attendant. I have been a member of Holy Cross United Methodist Church since 1989. I transferred to Holy Cross UMC from a church in Iowa.

          In 1991-1994 I worked in Lincoln Unified School District and Stockton Unified School District as a teacher’s aide and translator. I attended Humphreys College and received a Bachelor in Arts degree in early childhood education. After that I was a preschool teacher at San Joaquin Head Start for twenty years. When Head Start closed and my father passed shortly after, I became a care giver for my mother and have been caring for her for the last five years.

          I am the fifth one out of nine siblings that immigrated from Laos in 1988. I have one daughter who is attending San Jose State University. I enjoy travel, jogging and working with children. I continue loving and caring for them.

          Thank you Holy Cross for having me here to be a part of little ones’ lives.