Territory joins Christians worldwide celebrating Easter

President Obama: “...an opportunity… to give thanks for the all-important gift of grace”

Christians around the world, including those in American Samoa, are commemorating Good Friday today, the day when they believe Jesus Christ was crucified and died on the cross at Calvary to save the world.

Good Friday is being marked with morning services by some church denominations, especially the Catholic faith, whose parishioners will re-create the final steps Jesus took while carrying his cross to be crucified — they are embodied in the fourteen Stations of the Cross — it started just before sunrise.

Good Friday precedes Easter Sunday, the day Christians believe Jesus was resurrected— and will include a wide range of church services territory-wide, followed by an Easter feast. On Saturday there will be Easter Egg hunts for the children.

To mark Easter, President Barack Obama Wednesday morning hosted a prayer breakfast at the White House, saying that “in a few short days, all of us will experience the wonder of Easter morning. And we will know, in the words of the Apostle Paul, ‘Christ Jesus... and Him crucified’.”

“It’s an opportunity for us to reflect on the triumph of the resurrection, and to give thanks for the all-important gift of grace,” Obama told the audience. “And for me, and I’m sure for some of you, it’s also a chance to remember the tremendous sacrifice that led up to that day, and all that Christ endured — not just as a Son of God, but as a human being.”

(Complete context of Obama’s speech is found on www.whitehouse.gov]

Gov. Togiola Tulafono declared today a government holiday and all government offices are closed. Employees required to work will receive holiday wages in accordance with applicable laws and regulations.

With the three-day weekend, police plan to increase road patrols to keep the territory’s highways safe and Department of Public Safety urges the community to keep peace and harmony at this time, when Christians mark the death and resurrection of Jesus.

Several local businesses are closed to not only observe Good Friday but to allow their workforce to attend morning church services. ANZ Amerika Samoa Bank is closed today along with StarKist Samoa.

However, Bank of Hawai’i along with all federal offices including the U.S. Post Office in Fagatogo are open for business as usual.

In observance of Good Friday, Samoa News has no print edition today; however, the Saturday weekend edition — Toasavili — will print as usual.



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