SDA church dispute on assets heads to court

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Last month leaders of the SDA church in the South Pacific Division (SPD) met again in Australia with pastors from Samoa and Samoan pastors representing Samoan churches in New Zealand and Australia. The bible conference discussed the impasse in Samoa which is detrimental to a fundamental doctrine of the SDA church where there are now two seventh-day Sabbaths, some worshipping on Saturday and the majority worshipping on Sunday.

An outcome of the meeting is the matter to be referred to the Biblical Research Committee of the South Pacific Division for further research.

But in Samoa, the local church administration has instructed the law office of Schuster-Betham-Annandale to write to the Leauvaa-uta SDA members who are worshipping on Saturday to refrain from using the church facility there. The letter dated 6th February warns that failure to comply within 7 days will result in the matter been taken to the High Court for an order regarding ownership, demolition and removal by the church of assets.

The letter from the lawyer however states that the church does not dispute the land belongs to the title Sala (held by Fonoti Peteli). This is further confirmed in a letter from the Register of the Lands and Titles Court stating the ownership of the land known as Laumasa is with Sala Fonoti Peteli and is not being disputed. The Register however goes further advising the parties involved to seek legal advice from lawyers in regards to dividing of church assets.

The SDA Sabbath dilemma in Samoa today centers around which day is the seventh-day of the week after the IDL change in 2011, the second time Samoa has changed its location to the IDL. Is it Saturday or Sunday?

Seventh-day Adventists keeps the Sabbath on the seventh day of the week which is Saturday like everywhere else in the world. Most Christian churches in Samoa however also call Sunday the Sabbath but for a different reason; to commemorate the day of Jesus resurrection which falls on Sunday the first day of the week,

On the TVNZ program Tagata Pasefika last year, President of the SDA church in Samoa, Pastor Uili Solofa stated that now in Samoa, the seventh-day falls on Sunday. The same argument was published in the Samoa Observer 1st July issue saying, The practical result in terms of Sabbath keeping is that Sunday not Saturday has become the seventh day of the week.

In a document dated 29th December 2011, Pastor Uili Solofa wrote, The majority of church leaders, worshippers and villages (in Samoa) are not saying they are happy that Seventh-day Adventists are keeping Sunday, instead what they are saying is that we are going to keep the Sabbath of the Seventh-day Adventist church; praise God!

In a separate correspondence, Pastor Uili Solofa also wrote, You have to know that all the other Christian religions in Samoa have publicly testified that they have moved to keep the seventhday Sabbath of the Bible.

Catholic Chancellor Ono does not appear to share that view. Asked about casinos opening on Sunday, Father Ioane says that personally, he had no problems with it. For Catholics or any Christian for that matter, Sunday is a day of rest, a day of giving thanks and praise to the Lord. It is also a day of joy and celebration because for the Catholic Church, Sunday is the day of resurrection of Jesus. (Samoa Observer, March 12, 2013)

Such statement by SDA leaders in Samoa and the Pacific that Sunday is the seventh-day in Samoa today contradicts why Christian churches worship on Sunday being the first day of the week to commemorate the day of Jesus resurrection.

END

Photo 1: SDA church at Matatufu

AGAI LE MATAUPU A LE EKALESIA ASO FITU I LE FAAMASINOGA E SUE LE PULE O FALESA
Tusia: eventpolynesia.com

O Fepuari na tea nei na toe fono ai foi i Ausetalia taitai o le pulega a le Ekalesia Aso Fitu i le Pasefika ma faifeau Samoa mai Samoa faapea sui faifeau mai Ekalesia Samoa i Niu Sila ma Ausetalia mo le toe lauliliuina o le mataupu i Samoa ua oia ai nei se tasi o mataupu silisili a le Ekalesia, lea ua lua ai nei o latou aso tapuai i Samoa, o nisi i le Aso Toanai ma le toatele i le Aso Sa.

O le iuga o lea fonotaga o le a tuuina atu ai le mataupu mo le suesueina e le komiti faapitoa o mataupu silisili a le Ekalesia i le pulega a le Pasefika, le BRComm.

Peitau ua aliae mai nei se isi tulaga faaletonu i Samoa lea ua taulima ai e sui o le Ekalesia Aso Fitu o le Toe Afio Mai o loo tapuai pea i le Aso Toanai i Leauvaa-uta le tusi mai le ofisa loia o loo tu mo le ofisa ulu o le Ekalesia i Samoa, faapea le tusi mai le Matagaluega o Faamasinoga ma le Faafoeina o Tulaga Tau Faamasinoga.

I le tusi mai le loia na tusia aso 6 Fepuari o loo faapea mai ai, Ua poloaia e le Peresetene (Ekalesia Aso Fitu) ina ia aua le toe faaaogaina le Malumalu ma meatotino a le Ekalesia ae taliga se faaiuga mai le Faamasinoga Fanua ma Suafa e tusa ai ma le talosaga ua taatia nei. A le utagia mai lenei poloaiga i totonu o le 7 aso mai le aso e taulimaina ai lenei tusi, o le a tuuina atu loa le mataupu i le Faamasinoga Maualuga mo se poloaiga i le pulea, talaia ma le aveesea e le Ekalesia o meatotino ia pei ona taua.

O loo faaalia foi i lenei tusi e faapea, E le tuufesiliina pe aia foi le Ekalesia i le pule o le fanua e patino i lau afioga Sala. A o le talitonuga o le Ekalesia, o le Malumalu ma meatotino o loo i totonu ma fafo aua le faafoeina o galuega a le Ekalesia o meatotino ua uma ona faamatuu i le pule a le Ekalesia e tusa ma faiga faavae ma masani pea faatu ma amata se Ekalesia i totonu o se nuu ma alalafaga.

I le tusi mai le resitala o Faamasinoga Fanua ma Suafa o loo faapea mai, O loo manino le pule a le suafa Sala i le fanua o Laumasa e pei ona tulai mai ai Sala Fonoti Peteli na talosag mai, e pei foi ona tau fai lagolagoina e o tou finagalo faaalia. Peitai, o le tulaga i le vaeluaina o meatotino a le Ekalesia, o lea e fautuaina ai ma le ava tele le agai e sailia se fesoasoani faaletulafono mai se loia e sailia ai le sao o lenei mataupu, e pei ona feteenai ai o tou finagalo.

E pei ona silafia, o le Ekalesia Aso Fitu o lo latou Sapati e faitau lea i le aso e fitu iai aso o le vaiaso ma e pau lea i le Aso Toanai i soo se vaega o le lalolagi. Ae mo le tele o ekalesia Kerisiano i Samoa o loo faaigoaina foi le Aso Sa o le Aso Sapati e faamanatu ai le toe tu o Iesu i le aso muamua o le vaiaso.

Peitai i le polokalame o le Tagata Pasefika a le Televise a Niu Sila i le Tausaga na tea nei na saunoa ai le Peresetene o le Ekalesia i Samoa, Pastor Uili Solofa ua avea nei le Aso Sa i Samoa ma aso fitu o le vaiaso. O lea mau sa faapea foi ona lomia foi i le Samoa Observer i le aso 1 Iulai o loo faapea ai, O le tulaga ua iai nei i le tausia o le Sapati ua suia ai le Aso Toanai ae ua avea le Aso Sa ma aso e fitu iai aso o le vaiaso.

I se pepa na tusia e Pastor Uili Solofa i le aso 29 Teseam 2011 o loo faapea mai, O le toatele o taitai o Ekalesia, tagata lotu ma nuu e le o talanoa ma faapea ane ua fiafia o le a o atu le Ekalesia Asofitu e tausi le Aso Sa, ae o le latou gagana o loo gagana ai O le a tatou o e tausi le Sapati o le Lotu Asofitu. Viia le Atua!

O se mau e feteenai tele lea ma le talitonuga o isi Ekalesia Kerisiano o loo tapuai i le Aso Sa, poo le aso muamua o le vaiaso, e faamanatu ai le toe tu manumalo o Iesu.

MAEA

ATA 1: Falesa Ekalesi Aso Fitu o le Toe Afio mai i Matautufu

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