13 January 2019, Apia Samoa. The descendants of the late Sola Nepa Matafeo and Muliagatele Fa’agagaloemauaiasoloufili believe that their roots as a family remain strong in their foundation when they regularly come together to celebrate their blessings as a family.
The reunion held at the St Therese Tofamamao Samoa Retreat and Accomodation at Tofamamao Leauvaa is the second for the Sola family.
Speaking to Samoa Global News, 93 year old Sola Lagi Tauiliili who is the high chief of the family said the most important part of their family gathering is to know their roots, where and who they came from.
“Our theme is ‘Family are Forever’ with an aim to strengthen current bonds and make sure that we continue to get along as a family for generations to come”.
The late Sola Nepa Matafeo and Muliagatele Fa’agagaloemauaiasoloufili had 11 children and 4 generations of decendants now regularly have family reunions.
“The main purpose for our family reunion is for our children to get to know their cousins, nephews, nieces and so on,” he said.
“It is also where we come together and discuss matters that we need to do for the betterment of not only us but our children”, said Sola.
The family’s leader said that it provides them with an important time to reflect on the legacy left by their parents.
“We talk about our parents and what they were like and what they would want us to do if they were still around”.
Sola also expressed how this family reunion worked well to strengthen family and church values they shared.
He said the family put together various activities all focused around family health, unity and togetherness.
Learning family history was also an important part of the reunion.
“We started last on Monday with a mass conducted by Father Taisali Leuluaialii of the Leauvaa Catholic church.
“Followed by the mass we had an ava ceremony to welcome our families from New Zealand, Australia, American Samoa and here.”
He said there were a lot of family bonding activities and watching the young ones connect was the best thing for Sola.
“Seeing the younger generation connect on another level, the way their parents do as siblings.”
The next family reunion for Sola’s family will be in 2021 hosted by the Australians.
“We’ve decided on this reunion that we will be having family reunions every two years now, because it was every three years but we talked and discuss that we need to bring it down to two years,” he said.
“All in all it was a great reunion and I am sad that it has come to the end but we have to get back to reality and prepare ourselves and save up for the next one in 2021.”