Head of State a man of many gifts
There is more to Samoa’s Head of State, His Highness Tuimalealiifano Va'aletoa Sualauvi II, than meets the eye.
While his official duties require him to serve his country as an honourary figure, Tuimaleal'iifano is also a man of the cloth.
On Sundays, he has quietly been conducting the services at the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa at Matautu Falelatai.
While some may think it strange for someone of such stature to also perform churchly duties, the people of Falelatai village are simply appreciative of Tuimaleali'ifano’s heretofore unrecognised work.
Falelatai Village Mayor, Lupematasila Tuliloaina, described Tuimaleali'ifano’s service and dedication to the church as “humbling”.
“The Head of State has been conducting church services since our former Church Minister Reverend Elder Tautiaga Senara retired this year in July," said Lupematasila.
“We are still looking for a church minister, but in the meantime the Head of State has been leading the church service because he is the ‘aoao fesoasoani’ (Reverend’s Assistant).
“He is a humble man. He talks to everybody and when he comes for the church service he even talks to the small children.”
Rev. Senara and his wife, Olita Senara and children exited the congregation in July after their last church service to farewell the village they had served for 25 years.
Lupematasila said Rev. Senara was one of the longest serving church ministers there.