Church Service to Commemorate the 60th Anniversary of the Independence Day of Samoa

31st May 2022
The Samoa High Commissioner, H.E. Leasi Papali'i Scanlan delivering his remarks at the church service
A Church Service, to commemorate the 60th Anniversary of the Independence Day of Samoa and the Opening of the Samoa Language Week was held at the EFKS Church in Hutt Valley on Sunday 29th May 2022. The Service was organised by the Mafutaga Tu’ufa’atasi a Ekalesia i Ueligitone and was led by Toea’ina Fa’atonu Rev Fa’atulituli Setu (EFKS Hutt Valley) . The beautiful hymns were sung by the EFKS, Methodist & Catholic Choirs from Hutt Valley and the EFKAS Choir from Wainuiomata. The programme started with the Procession of the flags of Samoa and New Zealand, followed by the singing of both National Anthems. At the end of the Service, the Samoa High Commissioner, H.E Leasi Papali’i T. Scanlan, was given the opportunity to address the large Congregation. In his address, the High Commissioner acknowledged the huge contributions and sacrifices of our forefathers leading up to the independence and sovereign nation, being the first in the Pacific at the time. He also shared briefly on the long history of Samoa’s endurance through colonisation by Germany in 1899 followed by the British under the New Zealand Administration in 1914, culminating in Samoa’s independence in 1962 and the signing of the Treaty of Friendship with New Zealand in August the same year. The High Commissioner also shared the significance of Samoa’s partnership and longstanding relations with New Zealand post-independence as well as the prosperous Samoan diaspora within New Zealand with influences and contributions through sports, education, health and politics. The High Commissioner also spoke of the importance of understanding and speaking the Samoan language in order to understand and appreciate more the richness of the Samoan Custom & Tradition. The New Zealand Minister of Pacific Peoples, Hon. Aupito William Sio, spoke on behalf of the New Zealand Government. The Church Service was well attended by the Samoan community in Wellington as well as several Members of Parliament. The High Commissioner was accompanied by his spouse, Mrs. Joyce Scanlan, family and staff of the Samoa High Commission. This is His Excellency’s final attendance at this Annual Event in his capacity as the Samoa High Commissioner, as his Term will finish at the end of June.