Vicariate of St Peter competition targets violence

The Catholic Vicariate of Saint Peter hosted a competition at the weekend targeting the violence that continues to impact women and children in Samoa on a daily basis.

The competition was divided into two categories: the cultural song which should be about any kind of "violence" that is faced by the people in their everyday lives; while the other category is cultural skits however, it is not just any other cultural myths and legends but a true story that happened in their own villages.

The Catholic Youth Director, Father Losi Nuumia, said in his remarks after the competition that he regrets making the event a competition as all the youth who participated were all winners in his eyes.

"To be honest, I regret making this as a competition, everything today was spectacular. Everyone's a winner, and the performances made by each youth were fantastic," he said.

"The preparation, the effort and everything I am just very proud of everyone. This is a huge step-up for our Vicariate."

"However, whatever the outcome that will come with the judges' decision then let us all celebrate. We compete but in the end, we are all sons and daughters of the Lord. A great night indeed with you all."

There are 12 parishes in the St Peter Vicariate, however, only 10 were able to compete. Those 10 were Safata & Siumu parish, Vailele parish, Falefa parish, Luatuanuu parish, Solosolo parish, Lotofaga parish, Tiavea parish, Fagaloa parish, Saleaumua parish, and Samusu parish.

Each parish contributed their competing songs where they sung about the different abuse and violence that is found in Samoa. The forms of violence that got the most mention in the songs were violence against women and children. 

However, the Falefa parish in their performance showed how the abuse also impacted men. 

In their cultural skit, each parish performed a skit based on any myths or legends that occurred in their own village. One of the performances from Vailele parish was about the first ava plant which was found in Vailele. 

Luatuanu'us skit was based on the two legends, Utumau'u and Utuma who were turned into stones at Luatuanu'u and are there to this day. The story is that the two legends escaped from a war that took place in Tuipulotu only to be turned into stones at Luatuanuu.

An act performed by the Solosolo parish during their song showcased a couple fighting over trivial matters which ended up with the man beating up his wife. 

Another violent act that was showcased on the night of the competition was of the children who go out to sell goods in order to please their parents especially their fathers.

A song by Luatuanuu parish made the crowd emotional, as a child who came home without cash due to her inability to sell goods, led to her father beating her up together with her mother. 

And in response to the abuse, she cried and sang, "Blessed are you if you feel the importance of children in families. Dad, you abuse me when you're mad just to please your emotions. I want to find comfort, peace, and I want to live a happy life, please my Lord help me."

The mother as well in her response said, "Blessed are you if you feel the importance of mothers lives, my heart breaks as you have stepped on your covenant in which you have promised to cherish in front of God, oh please have mercy."

The results are as follows of the various song and cultural skits competition are as follows: 

Song competition:

  1. Safata & Siumu parish
  2. Vailele parish
  3. Solosolo parish
  4. Luatuanuu parish
  5. Falefa parish
  6. Tiavea parish
  7. Fagaloa parish
  8. Lotofaga parish
  9. Saleaumua parish
  10. Samusu parish

Cultural skit competition:

  1. Saleaumua parish
  2. Luatuanuu parish
  3. Vailele parish
  4. Safata parish
  5. Lotofaga parish
  6. Falefa parish
  7. Fagaloa parish (equal in 7th place)
  8. Samusu parish (equal in 7th place)
  9. Tiavea parish
  10. Solosolo parish
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