Rev. Dr. Kalesita U. Tu’ifua

Kalesita was born and raised in the South Pacific on the island of Tonga. When she was 13 years-old, her family moved to Hawaii and settled on the North Shore of Oahu where her father served as the local pastor for Kahuku UMC.

Kalesita completed her undergraduate studies in Financial Economics from the University of Hawaii and graduated from Hawaii Pacific University with a Masters in Information Systems.



For 12 years, she worked as a Compliance Officer for the Bank of Hawaii. Similar to the story of Jonah, God called Kalesita but she did not listen until a tragic incident had her finally hear His voice and she answered with, “Here I am Lord.”

In 1999, Kalesita moved to Claremont School of Theology where she began her formal study for professional ministry. After three years, she graduated from theology school with an emphasis on preaching and pastoral care.
Kalesita was commissioned at the United Methodist’s 2002 Annual Conference and appointed to her very first church at Holtville United Methodist at the border of San Diego and Mexicali. In July of 2005, she was appointed to serve a two-point charge in the San Fernando Valley: Sun Valley UMC (Tongan ministry) and Trinity United Methodist of Arleta (an English speaking congregation). 4 years later, Kalesita was appointed to serve a two-point charge with Sun Valley UMC and Knollwood UMC.

Kalesita truly believes that the church is the place where you can experience the life changing power and presence of God.  For her, the purpose of the church is to meet the needs of the community as well as to lead people in establishing a personal relationship with Christ. The church is the place where we can use our unique gifts to make a difference and change lives. With open hearts, open minds, and open doors, we can be the hands and feet of Jesus. Our love for God and the people of God leads the church in developing ministries that outreach and demonstrate that love.

Kalesita has served as a member of the Board of Higher Education, the Racial Ethnic Committee and the Media and Communication Committee of the Conference. Throughout her time of ministry and service in the church, she has been asked to be a guest speaker, teacher, and workshop leader in various churches throughout the conference.

Some of Pastor Kalesita’s hobbies include reading, outdoor activities, and spending time with her family. She is a kind, patient and loving pastor as well as a mother of 5 beautiful children who enjoys being with people and sharing her faith in Christ.

If you have any questions, concerns or wish to simply speak with a pastor, you may reach Pastor Kalesita through the church office:

office@knollwoodchurch.com or 818-360-8111