New Papauta parish commissioned

By Soli Wilson 20 June 2021, 11:00AM

A new building for the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa (C.C.C.S.) at the all-girls Papauta College was opened on Friday morning. 

It is the fourth church building for the College since its establishment in 1892; almost 130 years ago.

Savaliga Gu Time, the wife of the C.C.C.S. Elders Committee Chairman was given the honour to cut the ribbon to officially open the new building.

The dedication service was officiated by Reverend Elder Iosefa Atapana Uilelea, the new Chairman of the C.C.C.S. for the 2021-2022 fiscal year. 

The C.C.C.S. General Secretary, Reverend Vavatau and his wife, Roina Taufao, is in charge of the Papauta parish. They have been there since 2015. 

The Church building prior to the newly commissioned building was there for 40 years but was marked unsafe to host services for the students, as a result of the many cyclones it has seen over the years, Rev. Vavatau said.

The project started with $430,000 tala from various avenues of the denomination but ended up costing a total of $438,069, not including the furniture and air conditioning units. The cost of the chairs alone surpassed $30,000. 

Reverend Taufao revealed that the excess costs of the parish project topped $60,893. 

“When good things approach together with the bad things, we say, the good things are of God whilst the bad things are revenge from God as a result of the people’s actions,” Rev. Elder Uilelea said.

“But Job’s words reflect that wisdom cannot be found in the land of the living, there is also nothing expensive in this world that can buy wisdom. But where will we get wisdom? Only God knows. 

The Chairman said as they bear witness to the well-built building, he was mindful that behind the beauty of it are the sweat and tears of the parish and the builders for their hard work. 

“This is the true meaning of Job’s words; through the pain and suffering, while this project was in progress, there was also the wisdom of God,” said Rev. Elder Uilelea.

“This was possessed by the faithful and worshippers during the time of this project. Now we have witnessed God’s wisdom through this building.

“Thank you for your work; thank you for your patience and persistence for God’s work.”

He also issued a reminder to the Papauta Girls College pupils who were present at the dedication service saying “Blessed are you to have a new Church building.”

“But remember, fear in the Lord, is wisdom itself. But the question is, where does it start? It is praising God. That is the most important subject,” said Rev. Elder Uilelea. 

“This is the building where you will worship God, pray and listen to his Word. Do not use this building to come in and gossip about your sister or your teacher, or gossip about the Reverend, his wife and children. Don’t do that.

“Do not make this building a place where you can bring your phone to talk to others. That has become a trend in this denomination and many others; while the reverend is preaching, the congregation is just texting each other. 

“It is also nice and cool in here; do not come in here to sleep. Let this Church be the place where you seek wisdom from God.” 

The Papauta school for girls was a boarding school started in 1892 by the London Missionary Society and is still in existence today, holding classes from Year 9 to Year 13.  

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By Soli Wilson 20 June 2021, 11:00AM
Samoa Observer

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