Aotearoa pastor couple inspired to help comfort Samoa

By Tema Hemi
Pastors Stacey (far right) and Hiraina (middle) Raika, along with our correspondent Tema Hemi, pray for Samoa - Photo / File

The belief of a higher power can make a difference, and impact people, even at their lowest point in life. That is what brings husband and wife Pastors Stacey and Hiraina Raika to Samoa, on a spiritual mission to help those who have been affected by the devastation of the measles outbreak. 

Armed with only their belief these two pastors have come to Samoa to provide relief for those in sadness.  

Pastor Stacey Raika says, "We both are ministers. The work that we will be doing will be to give sermon, and words of inspiration to help uplift the spirits of the people here in Samoa. We are here to comfort and this work for the both of us is to be a helping hand to all here in Samoa."

The couple will travel throughout the local villages with a local pastor but are still unsure of what to expect.

"We are not entirely sure as to what lays ahead of us in this journey. We don’t have any expectations of what we will experience in the villages. But we definitely show our love and gratitude toward them all. 

Pastor Hiraina says, "So some of the mahi that we will be doing here is serving the community. Serving the families that have been affected. Especially those that are in the villages."

"It is divine inspiration that leads their mission of hope. In the beginning, was the word and the word was God, and the word dwelt among man so we are here to depict that."

The couple took a moment in the day to pay homage to the fallen 70.  

"We carry the heart of our people back in Aotearoa first and foremost and to show love. People don’t want to know how much you know, they want to know how much you care.” 

Pastor Stacey says, "We will give all our love to those that have been heavily burdened at this time. Because we are parents of ten children and seven grandchildren we understand the pain that many are feeling due to the loss of their children."

Tomorrow the couple begin their pilgrimage into the local villages of Samoa.