With a few days to go until the end of 2017 and with the Church stepping into the Advent season effective from last Sunday 3rd December 2017, the Catholic Church on Thursday night celebrated the 10th anniversary and renewed the Consecration of Samoa and the Archdiocese of Samoa to the Immaculate Heart of Mary at Parliament ground Tiafau.
With the help of the Holy Spirit, this was initially proclaimed by His Grace Afioga Archbishop Alapati Lui Mataeliga in Mass on December 7th 2007 attended by government dignitaries and local faithful at the same venue.
Led by the Archbishop Mataeliga, the vigil Mass of thanksgiving attended by an estimated 3,000 faithful was also a ‘’renewal‘’ of that prayer intention corresponding with our Mother’s immaculate conception on Friday 8th December which the Church does celebrate every year.
It is one of the faithful acts of the Catholic Church in Samoa in dependable honor of Jesus Christ’s Mother; who is also the Mother of the Church; who unconditionally helps the Church through her intercession before the Throne of the Trinity God.
Mother Mary is the Church’s help in times of difficulties, sufferings and trials which are obstacles for the Church to hardly accomplish its core mission - that is - to make all nations disciples and baptize people in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit and then bring them all into one fold – the Church.
With the consecration since 2007, Samoa experienced so many blessings via our mother’s intercession and we the people of God have to respond in new joyful songs of praise.
Our Lord performs miracles in our lives to enrich us in blessings one way or another and we have to answer back from the heart in singing new tunes of joy, praise, and adoration but not the tunes of deceit, hate and jealousy so and so.
We should thank God for hearing our Mother’s prayers and intercession and in that connection, the Fraternity of the Missionary Disciples of Our Lady of Fatima was therefore established by Archbishop Mataeliga at the Chapel of the Apparition on September 8th 2017 during a pilgrimage of 40 plus faithful to Rome, Fatima and Lourdes.
The returning pilgrims are the first registered members of the Fraternity and its role is to continue with the mission of the first Missionary of Mary’s work of faith in Samoa and spread the message of Fatima beginning from within the fraternity’s individual members, their families in their daily lives in prayers, depending on the help of the Holy Spirit and our Mother’s intercession.
The group took a sort of vow-like oath during Mass in the presence of the faithful. The renewal call and Fraternity establishment signifies the purpose of the Advent season which is the period for all Christian souls, the interior castle of God as Saint Teresa of Avila puts it, and as the Bible calls it the temples of God to be readily prepared to receive the arrival of the promised Savior of the World – the Word Incarnate or Word Made Flesh.
The candle light vigil Mass kicked off at 6.00pm opened with the Divine Mercy Chaplet and finally the Fatima Rosary. It is a historical cerebration for the local Catholic Church and our Samoa as well. It will be commemorated by many Catholic generations to come.