Culture and community engagement were highly emphasized in a special gathering of the Auckland-based Samoan Catholic Group and the Lalovaea Catholic Youth Group.
This is according to the Youth President of the Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish Youth, Taupau Emanuele.
He told the Samoa Observer that despite the peak season of air fares, Auckland-based Samoan Catholic Group didn’t give in their chance to visit the place they called home.
“The Lalovaea Catholic Youth Group in Apia was pleased to host 18 Catholic community members from Auckland, New Zealand, for a get together.
“The special get together is an innovative youth centric program intended to promote Samoan Culture and its green environment and to increase the capacity of youth in community engagement, it inspired to encourage young people to be more complimentary of their Fa’asinomaga,” said Emanuele.
He said the gathering was also treated as a reunion by the overseas group reminiscing about their humble beginnings in Lalovaea.
The week-long events for the gathering officially started with an ava ceremony and to’onai last Sunday.
The second day, two groups were mixed and grouped into teams and assigned to find nine clues for a half day amazing race game to experience and learn more about Samoa’s independence and to visit a few of the many historical sites around the country.
“The third day focused on celebrating our Samoan culture.
“There was so much joy in the demonstration and the making of umu, and in the evening there were intriguing Samoan performances and entertainments between the two groups.”
The groups also took a one-day tour of Savai’i.
Emanuele commended the strong support from the Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish Priest, Fr. Spa Silver, Deacons, Faumuina Salā, Tupa’i and Anau and the N.Z. team led by chairperson, Tofilau Iosefo, and members, Toa Tavita Nafo’i, Luka Lemisio, Fune Loimata, Youth President Michelle Amoa and their youth group.
“For without them the event would not have been possible.”