Thursday 12 August 2021 Upolu Samoa. Deacons from the Catholic Aiga Paia Vicariate assembled at Le Uaina Resort on Monday afternoon 9th August for a week-long retreat.
Led by Father Eteuati Lapa of the Siusega parish, the retreat aims to reaffirm deacon roles, and restore spiritual strength for the church leaders and their wives.
In response to questions from Samoa Global News Deacon Faafetai Lalotoa from Faleula, attending with his wife Otilia said the week has been a wonderful experience for them.
“We’ve never had the chance to have a retreat at a resort like this before.. it’s been restorative and relaxing for us”, he said.
The annual retreat is usually held at church compounds, however, this year for the first time, the Aiga Paia Vicariate chose to have its annual retreat at the Le Uaina resort, located just after the Piula Theological College.
Led by Father Eteuati Lapa of the Siusega parish, the retreat was attended by deacons from eleven church ministries. Catholic church deacons and their wives from the villages of Malie, Faleula, Tuanai, Afega, Toamua, Lepea, Vaiusu, Tulaele, Siusega, Nuu Fou and Aleisa – were all in attendance.
According to Deacon Faafetai Lalotoa the retreat creates a safe environment for them to share about the life of service to the Church and the spirit of serving God.
“It helps to strengthen our spiritual life, also to refresh and restore us to carry on our work as deacons, to serve the Lord God,” he said.
Faafetai Lalotoa has been a musician his whole life; playing for the youth choir of Faleula village where he is known for teaching piano to Sunday school children of Faleula.
Deacon Lalotoa said it has been a productive week and they are well ready to return to their homes on Friday 13 August, the last day of their Annual Retreat for 2021.