Celebrations erupt as nineteen graduate from Piula
The Piula Theological College compound was filled with a celebratory spirit as 19 new graduates proudly marched down the aisle of Lupetaumafa Piula Hall.
15 students achieved a Diploma in theology while 4 graduated with a Bachelor of Divinity, marking the end of one chapter and a beginning of a new one.
Methodist President, Reverend Apineru Lafai, encouraged the graduates to maintain their faith in God as they begin their new journey.
"We need trustworthy servants, we need servants who believe in God and want to be used and give their life for the Lord and his works," he said.
"May God bless you all with new beginnings and may you all feel the importance of His calling."
The Dux of the Diploma in Theology was achieved by Eteuati Iosia. Tulei Jr. Tulei was awarded the Dux for the Bachelor of Divinity.
Tears and smiles were seen everywhere as families flooded the compound with candy necklaces and messages of congratulations.
Graduates gave the Lord all the credit for their success, highlighting that although the journey wasn't easy, God helped them through it all.
Tulei who has been in the Theological College said continuing our education in the Theological College is something very important, especially for those going into the calling of the Church.
"The award we have received today is a challenge we have taken on to keep trying and not to limit ourselves when it comes to theological education for the Church," he said.
"We thank the families and friends for coming to support us and those who have been there from the beginning."
Tulei said in the six years of education in Piula, they have learnt many things that have prepared them going into the role of being a Reverend.
"In the six years since we have been in the College, this is also six years we have continuously learn in the areas of the college and for conducting the duties of a reverend in preparation for the special calling; there are so many things we have learnt from here, we cannot list all of them," he told Samoa Observer.
Tulei is the son of Fa'ifa'i and Elena Tulei from Manono while his wife, Urima is the daughter of Alofimauulima and Sonota'a Tautau from Malaemalu Falealili.
The couple are excited to see where they will be assigned by the church next whether to remain in the College or go into another area of the denomination to serve.
"We wait and listen wherever the Church takes us," said Tulei.
The Piula Theological College graduation is one of the events within the course of two weeks of the Methodist Church's annual conference.
Academic field top students:
First year - Tipa Lale
Second year - Takashi Faavevela
Third year - Samoa Mataafa
Fourth year - Eteuati Iosia
Bachelors in Divinity - Tulei Jr. Tulei.