Local leader of S.I.S.D.A.C. sorry, reviews sermons
The most senior official of the Samoa Independent Seventh Day Adventist (S.I.S.D.A.C.) church in Samoa, Pastor Papali’i Iafeta Masepau, has apologised to everyone offended by sermons delivered by their Worldwide Leader, Pastor Willie Papu, on national television.
During an interview with the Weekend Observer, Pastor Papali’i also revealed the offending sermons were filmed in 2016 and although they have paid for them to be aired until 4 July 2020, they could be pulled anytime now.
“If a soul has been affected with the messages we preached, we apologize but I know my apologies might not solve much,” he said. “While trying to spread the message by the church (S.I.S.D.A.C) on television, we had no intension of criticising the other churches at all. Those sermons were filmed in 2016 and they had been aired via several mediums and social media many times before.”
Pastor Papali’i confirmed that Pastor Papu resides in New Zealand and he only travels to Samoa on special occasions. The Weekend Observer has contacted him for a comment, via email.
In the meantime, Pastor Papu said the local church is working with TV1 to screen the other remaining sermons with the idea of pulling them, if there is further reference to other churches and religions.
“We do not want to continue upsetting other people’s beliefs,” he said. “The messages were simply to be put out there for anyone whether they want to accept it or not. It’s up to the people what they want to believe and what they don’t want to believe.”
The apology from the local church follows an apology from the Chief Executive Officer of TV1, Galumalemana Faiesea Matafeo, on Friday.
“TV1 sincerely apologizes for any pain and discomfort inadvertently caused by S.I.S.D.A.C’s religious sermons broadcast on television, TV1,” Galumalemana said.
“We have repeatedly raised our concerns with the church leaders. We have discontinued the broadcasts of the controversial sermons as from yesterday evening. S.I.S.D.A.C. however, as a paying customer can still broadcast sermons purely on the word of God and without reference to any other church or beliefs.
“It is not the intention of TV1 to discredit any person or any church nor to cause divisions amongst religious organizations in Samoa. We take pride in providing equal access to broadcasting services to all members of our community.
“Censorship of church ministers’ sermons has never been seen as necessary. We count on the integrity and noble judgments of Church Leaders and all Servants of God when it comes to matters of spiritual teachings.”
Galumalemana said TV1 would now have to approve all religious sermons before broadcast.
Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi has ordered the Office of the Attorney General to investigate the sermons and TV1 for possible defamation.