All eyes were on the Tapu Niue Faith Community on Sunday 6 February at a celebration service to welcome them as a recognised Faith Community of the Uniting Church’s Presbytery of Western Australia.
Special guests in attendance from the Presbytery of Western Australia included Alison Xamon, Chairperson, Rev Dr David Ferguson, Secretary and Rev Bev Fabb, Multi-cultural and cross-cultural network Convener. Pepe Halatau (Lay Leader) represented the Tapu Niue Faith Community.
The service was a beautiful combination of prayers, chldren’s sharing and rhythmic guitar-led hymns sang in Niue. A decorative altar table, pretty frangipani flowers, colourful Niue gifts and bright cultural clothing added a Niue essence to the proceedings.
Key elements of the service were the Presentation of the Faith Community and the Act of Reception which was followed by a huge round of applause, welcoming the Tapu Niue Faith Community to the Uniting Church family. A mutual exchange of gifts between the Uniting Church and the Tapu Niue followed. Holy Communion was served by Rev Dr David Ferguson with assistance from Gosnells Uniting Church members who shared it with the congregation. The Tapu Niue took up an offering which will be donated to the UnitingWorld Tonga emergency appeal.
After the service, the Tapu Niue invited all guests to a lavish light lunch of Niue culinary dishes and sweet desserts. There seemed no richer way to conclude this very remarkable welcome celebration.
The Tapu Niue was formed in 2014. In 2018, they approached the Uniting Church to become a recognised Faith Community. After a long period of preparation, the day finally arrived on 6 February to welcome this very special community to the Uniting Church’s Presbytery of Western Australia.