This article was added by the user . TheWorldNews is not responsible for the content of the platform.

Hundreds gather for ordination of first American Samoan bishop

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Hundreds of devout Catholics, priests and bishops from around the world and government leaders from the territory as well as Samoa attended the ordination of Reverend Father Tumanuwao Etuale, as the Coadjutor Bishop of the Diocese of Samoa Pago Pago.

In August, the Vatican chose Father Kolio Etuate as the first local Samoan as Bishop-Elect for the Diocese of Samoa Pago Pago in American Samoa.

The celebration was held on Friday at Fatu-o-Aiga which started off with a Mass with three co-consecrator, most Reverend Bishop Peter Hugh Brown CS.S.R.; most Reverend Novatus Rugambwa Apostolic Delegate; Archbishop Alapati Mataeliga. While concelebrant was conducted by Archbishop Peter Ching Loy Chong of Fiji.

Most Reverend Novatus Rugambwa in his written message to Father Kolio said they win in charity by the Pastoral zeal turning their hearts to where the treasure is and that is to serve.

“And duty of man to pray and love, which enlarge the constricted heart and make it responsive to charity and ready to take up the care of the Lord’s flock.

“Meditating on these things we strive to provide for the welfare of the faithful, mindful of what will profit them, and we look with paternal love to the good of the ecclesial community of Samoa Pago Pago whose bishop our venerable Bishop Peter Hugh Brown, CSSR has earnestly requested that he might receive assistance in administering the of the diocese, as well as to foster more fruitfully the growth of the people of God in every way.

“We have therefore thought of you, venerable brother who from your accumulated expertise and service in the pastoral ministry in the diocese, especially regarding instructions of the Christian faithful and ecclesial administration, have required a singular reputation and a knowledge of the locality and its characteristics showing yourself to be well endowed with the spiritual and human qualities that support and equip you for undertaking these weighty duties.”

Fr Etuale was educated by the Marist Brothers, graduated with a BA in Philosophy and Master of Divinity from Mt Angel Seminary, and was ordained as a priest in American Samoa in May 2003. He is currently completing his Doctorate in Pastoral Ministry.

He has worked extensively in parishes and schools throughout the Diocese for 19 years, also serving on different Diocesan organizations. He was appointed the Chancellor of the Diocese in 2021.

Bishop-Elect, Father Kolio in his written statement thanked all the guests, the Apostolic Nuncio Most Reverend Novatus Rugambwa, bishops and priests from Oceania, Church leaders, government leaders, family, and friends.

 “Thank you for finding time out of your busy schedules to be a part of today’s occasion. I am honored and humbled with your presence.

 “I wish to thank my parents, all my family, friends, church communities and villages of Lotofaga, Gagaifolevao Lefaga, and Moata’a of Samoa, my village of Ili’ili of American Samoa for your endless support, love and prayers. It is without doubt that your love and prayers have blessed me throughout my life.

 “I would be remiss if I don’t acknowledge my late grandparents, Toalepaiali’i Etuale and Fa’aea Sesilia Tialemasunu, Masi Felise and Talaia Felise and Fola Talie Faumui for their love and prayers throughout my religious journey.”

The newly consecrated Coadjutor Bishop thanked the Most Reverend Peter Brown and Monsignor Viane Etuale for their leadership and mentorship.

 “I would also like to thank all my brother priests for your friendship and sharing of ministry of Christ, I would like to thank all the deacons, catechists and the people of the Diocese of Samoa Pago Pago.

 “I would especially like to thank the Diocesan Steering Committee Chairman High Chief Faiivae Alex Godinet and various committee leaders and members, for all your hard work in making today’s celebration possible.

 “You all have worked tirelessly for the last few months to prepare for today’s occasion; I appreciate and am thankful for all your time efforts and resources spent in making today a memorable occasion not only for myself but for the people of the Diocese of Samoa Pago Pago and the people of American Samoa.

 “I would like to recognize these people that have helped shape my life as a young priest our late Cardinal PioTaofinu’u, Bishop John Quinn Witzel, Father Van Camp Tavai, and Fr.Mikaele Falaniko.

 “They have shown me how to serve and love without boundaries. Their courageous and steadfast examples have greatly contributed to my ministry.

 “I am constantly reminded to do all things with love and care for each other. Last, but not least, I would like to personally thank this person. He is my uncle, my mentor, and my friend Msgr.Viane Etuale.

 “Thank you for being patient with me and all you have continued to do for me.

“My dear clergies, families and friends, and all the faithful of our Diocese of Samoa Pago Pago and the people of American Samoa, I will pray for you and humbly ask that you please remember me in yours as I am reminded of the Prayer of Saint Charles Borromeo — ‘Give me the ability to teach this faith to others without pride, without ostentation, and without personal gain’.”