Rev. Elder Dr. Leatulagi Faalevao is new head of Pacific Council of Churches


Rev. Elder Dr. Leatulagi Faalevao has been elected to lead the Pacific Council of Churches, the first time a church leader from American Samoa has been elected as moderator of the main organization of churches in the Pacific region.

The election took place on the final day of the 12th General Assembly of the PCC held in Noumea, New Caledonia, November 16-23.

Rev. Elder Dr. Faalevao, who is the current chair of the Congregational Christian Church of American Samoa, will lead the PCC for the next five years.

The other two nominees were incumbent moderator Rev. Dr. Tevita Havea of the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga, and Rev. Elder Sepiuta Hala’api’api of the Anglican Diocese of Polynesia.

The PCC Constitution requires the winner to receive 50% plus 1. After the first round of voting, Rev. Dr. Havea received 43%, Rev. Elder Dr. Faalevao received 38%, while Rev. Hala’api’api received 19%.

In the run off election, Rev. Elder Dr. Faalevao received 62% of votes while Dr. Havea received 38%.

The PCC Constitution states that if the moderator is male, then the vice moderator position must be held by a female. Thus, Rev. Sepuita was declared the new vice moderator.

During his acceptance speech, Rev. Elder Dr. Faalevao thanked Rev. Dr. Havea for his service to the PCC as its Moderator for the last 10 years. He also thanked the 12th General Assembly for their support and their belief in him as the person to steer the rudder of the PCC vaka for the next 5 years.

He looks forward to the difficult challenges of climate change, self determination, and other issues that Pacific churches continue to deal with. He said with the Spirit of God, and the Spirit of ecumenism that is alive and well in the Pacific, there is nothing that the Pacific Conference of Churches (PCC) cannot do together.

Rev. Elder Dr. Faalevao is active in regional church circles, being chairman of the the Pacific Theological Council and Executive in Suva, Fiji. He also served on the Central Committee of the World Council of Churches for the last decade.

He and faletua Vagai Faalevao have 5 children, and have been ministering at the CCCAS church in Amouli for close to 30 years.