Talofa and Greetings,
It’s a pleasure to once again welcome you all, families, friends, and partners of Piula Theological College to our website. I hope that you have a blessed beginning to 2020, and that our Lord the Creator and Sustainer of Creation has been part of your journey. I wish to share with you a bit about the Piula journey since the beginning of this year.
We have been recovering well from the measles epidemic that rocked the Samoa islands at the end of 2019, which slowly disappeared into the beginning of 2020. Although we have lost some of our loved ones all throughout the islands, Piula community has been blessed with no casualty. We thank God for his love, and we also applaud the assistance of our global community who have been great in helping our people. The Oceania weather has been unpredictable in February with gusty winds and heavy rainfall that affected some of our Programmes. However, we have also seen the saving hand of the Lord as his faithfulness endures forever. Paul reminds us,
“God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”
(1 Corinthians 10: 13)
The Piula va’a (Samoan sailing canoe) therefore has been sailing confidently in the opening months of 2020, in the midst of these few challenges. We see the light every single day, and we are continuously assured that your prayers have been supporting us all along.
I wish to share with you some of the good news and developments in the Campus to keep up updated of our journey in the year Twenty twenty.
- We cancelled our final year Diploma students’ fieldwork this academic year as a precautionary measure at the outbreak of the measles epidemic. It was supposed to be at the Apia East Synod in December-January, 2019/2020.
- We farewell Tulei Jr. Tulei and Lily, one of our lecturers and faletua in December. Tulei is continuing his studies for Master in Theology at the Pacific Theological College, Suva Fiji.
- As we farewell Tulei, we welcomed on board our new lecturer in January, Sitivi K Wright and his faletua Etenauna and son Sitivi. Sitivi has been graduated from the Pacific Theological College with Master in Theology (NT) in November, 2019.
- I was given the opportunity by SPATS (South Pacific Association of Theological Schools) to lead its Accreditation Team that visited Takamoa Theological College (Cook Islands Christian Church) in the beginning of this month (February). It was a great experience to visit one of the oldest theological institutions in the Pacific (est. 1839), and truly a blessing to be part of their journey to be accredited by SPATS.
Ongoing projects at the moment;
- Internal Review of our Academic Programmes: Diploma (Level 6), Bachelor of Divinity (Level 7), and Bachelor of Divinity with Honors (Level 8). After the Internal Review, there will be the External Review by the Piula Academic Board, hopefully in May. These preparations are geared towards a full Accreditation Visit by the Samoa Qualification Authority at the end of this year.
- Preparations for the Tulitulimatagau Programme Phase II (Outreach Continuing Theological Education Programme) for Lay Preachers of the Methodist Church in Samoa.
- Our Bachelor and Bachelor with Honors students’ are working very hard towards submitting their Thesis/Research Projects at the end of March. Please continue to pray for them.
- We will be hosting our biannual ecumenical fellowship with our partner Theological Colleges in Samoa (Malua Theological College and Kanana Fou Theological Seminary) from the 18th to the 20th of March 2020. We are looking forward to such a very important event, anticipating an interesting and fruitful time together with Principals, Lecturers, Students and their families.
We are assured of the Lord’s blessings as we continue to do His work. Theological Education has been and will continue to be part of the mission of the Christian Churches in the Pacific into the future and beyond. The scope of Theological Education has been changing and challenging. While mission and spirituality are always a priority in our training, quality is the dialect of education these days. It is therefore evident that with the help of national and regional Accreditation Agencies, we are moving into challenging waters. But with the Lord, nothing is impossible. The Piula va’a, with the Lord as its tautai, will sail with confidence in 2020.
We pray and hope that we will continue to sail together, as partners that support one another through prayers and love.
Revd. Dr. Mosese Mailo