The Methodist Church has a new President. Reverend Faulalo Leti Paaga was elected to the position during their annual conference underway at Faleula this week.
Reverend Faulalo will take over from the incumbent President, Reverend Apineru Lafai.
The 59-year-old is from the villages of Sale’imoa, Nu’uuli and Manu’a, American Samoa.
He comes to the role with 37 years of service to the church under his belt.
“I am overwhelmed and humbled by this calling,” he told the Samoa Observer.
“For me, I am just a mere servant and I feel inadequate but at the same time I am extremely grateful for the faith placed in me by the church.
“I believe this is my calling, this is the reason I have given up my entire life for it.”
Becoming a Church Minister wasn’t necessarily part of his plans, he revealed.
“In the past I have tried to get into the Navy, the Army but it was unsuccessful. It was not until when I sat the entry exam to get into Piula Theological College where I made it in that it dawned on me that this is exactly where I’m supposed to be.”
He started as a Church Minister in 1981 when he was called to serve at the Methodist Church in Massey, Auckland New Zealand. He was there for five years.
From there he progressed through the ladder until 2014 when he was appointed as Secretary of the Church.
“After New Zealand then we were posted to a Samoan Methodist Church in San Francisco for five years as well. We then moved to the Oceanside in California. We were in America for fourteen years.”
Asked what he loves the most about his calling as a Church Minister, Rev. Faulalo said it is the opportunity to make a difference and save lives.
Reverend Faulalo is married to Fialelei and they have six children. Together they are ready for their new journey.