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Samoans gather at Mass to honor the life of Bishop Quinn Weitzel

Source: Uifa’atali Amata’a Washington D.C. office press release

Washington, D.C. —  Congresswoman Uifa’atali Amata was blessed to attend the Resurrection Mass in memory of Bishop Emeritus Vaopunimatagi John Quinn Weitzel and to represent the people of American Samoa.

Also in attendance, Bishop Peter Brown flew from American Samoa and was there for the Diocese of Samoa-Pago Pago. He presented to the family some gifts of love, which were given to him to hand-carry to Bishop Weitzel’s family, including his older sister Mrs. Mary Joanne Hennessey, age 97.

Samoans flew long distances from the islands and many states such as California, North Carolina, Maryland and more to honor his life, pay their respects, and show their love.

Mrs. Ivona Mauga (left), who was for many years his loyal administrative assistant and later on, chancellor, was in attendance.

 “We were all deeply blessed by the life of Bishop Quinn Weitzel, and it was our joy to know him,” said Congresswoman Amata.

“I am humbled to try to find words to express how he served the Lord with gladness throughout his life. I know God did wonderful work through him and such good in others’ lives. He uplifted people and helped them, and was known for his Christian ways, kindness, wisdom, compassion and faithfulness.”

Bishop Weitzel spent many years, approximately four decades, in both American Samoa and Samoa, and was beloved by thousands of the Samoan people.

Following the service, Bishop Weitzel’s family held a lovely reception with plenty of delicious Chicago food and fellowship.

 “It is special to me to know that he and my father were the best of friends. In fact, the Bishop blessed our home in Coconut Point when it was first built and brand new. I think that blessing has been felt there, all these years!” continued Amata.

“In more recent times, each time we saw each other he would say I reminded him of his close friend, my Dad. If you know anything of how I feel about my dad, you will know I treasured that. But that was the Bishop’s way with people, he knew what to say to make someone happy, to make a difference, and to say something meaningful. That was one of his many gifts.”

 “While God has called him to rest, the good work of his life is still taking place in all of us, and in this remembrance,” she concluded. “Every one of us attended as family in unity before God to say thank you for the Bishop and the goodness of his life. We shared togetherness because of his love for people and untiring work of the Lord.”