The village of Leauva’a welcomed 49 new holders of the Tuala chiefly title during a colorful and elaborate ceremony yesterday.
The titleholders from the Itupaepae o Tavatele were blessed during a traditional ceremony attended by families and villagers.
Prior to the traditional formalities, the titleholders were blessed by Father Iosefo Mulipola, Father Moe Mataia and Father Poselio Tevaga at the Catholic Church, Leauva’a.
The family’s spokesperson, Tuala Peseta Tevaga, said yesterday was an exciting event for them, the culmination of years of planning.
“The whole purpose of this bestowment is to have enough matai to look after our Sa Tuala family not only here in Leauva’a but also at Samalaeulu Savai’i,” he said.
“So that’s why the leaders of the Sa Tuala family have decided to have this bestowment ceremony this morning.” Tuala Peseta added that yesterday would probably be the last time the title is bestowed for this particular part of the family.
“We have enough people to look after the family now,” he said.
“Maybe in the future when the young ones grow up then we will see but for now this is more than enough to look after the family here, Savai’i and all over the world.”
During the blessing, Tuala Peseta encouraged the new titleholders to prioritise their family, especially the church. “You have been chosen to look after our family, the churches and especially the village so I encourage you to do it with love,” he said.
“Serve everyone with love, you have been chosen to be a servants but not to be served. Lead your family with love and respect and make sure to put God first in all that you do.” The day ended with traditional formalities.