News Release

New LDS Stake Centre Dedicated in Puapua, Savaii

Elder Meliula M. Fata, Area Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, dedicated the new Savaii Puapua Stake Centre last Sunday evening. More than 1400 people attended the service. The stake centre is the church’s newest building in Samoa and is located in a beautiful area on the eastern end of the island of Savaii.

Dedicatory service attendees arrived in eight buses, about two dozen cars and trucks, in taxis, and on foot. They quickly filled the chapel and cultural hall to capacity. Another 200 sat in chairs outside the building to watch and listen through its louvered windows.

The Savaii Puapua Stake consists of seven wards (congregations) stretching from Saasaai  on the south to Samalaeulu and Patamea on the north. The Puapua ward will also use the building for its weekly activities and Sunday services.

Whenever the Church constructs a new building, there is a dedication ceremony held when it is finished. The purpose of the ceremony is to set aside the building for the work of God. Elder Fata offered a special prayer designating the building as the Lord’s house and asked Him to bless it and the surrounding grounds. He asked that it be a place for families to worship and learn together.

After the dedicatory prayer, Alema Fitisemanu, President of the Apia Samoa Temple; his wife, Merita Fitisemanu; Elder Fata’s wife, Ponaivao Fata; and Lio Isaia, President of the Pu’apu’a Stake spoke to the congregation.  Elder Fata then gave a concluding talk.

Church member, Falelauiula T. Cooper commented, “Elder Fata said, ‘This is a house of the Lord. We’re giving it to him. It should be a place to pray and worship.’ When I heard him say this, something in me felt familiar, like a reinforcement that this is true.”

Another member, Sekati Fiaui said that he learned that “…when we come here, to this house, we should remember we are special guests of the Lord.”

The spacious chapel will seat approximately 300 people. It connects to a large cultural hall that can be opened up to accommodate larger audiences when necessary.  The cultural hall can be used alone for a variety of events like socials, dinners, dances and cultural and musical performances. The building includes a baptismal font, classrooms for children, youth and adults, rooms for the church's organization for women, the Relief Society, and offices and meeting rooms for the stake president and the bishop.

The complex also has a new Family History Centre with computers and internet access to family history sites around the world. It is open to people of all faiths interested in searching out their family history and genealogy. Volunteers staff the centre to assist those interested in learning more.

The grounds are landscaped with native trees, shrubs and flowers and also include two concrete-surface basketball and volleyball courts.

stake is a group of Mormon wards [congregations] in a geographical area.  The word stake is taken from Old Testament tent imagery in which the “tent,” or church, is held up by supporting stakes (see Isaiah 54:2). There are usually five to ten wards in a stake.

The Savaii Puapua Stake is led by President Lio Isaia. Bishop Saulo Matafeo presides over the Puapua Ward.

There are currently six stakes on the island of Savaii, twelve on the island of Upolu and five on the island of Tutuila.


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