Obituary of Mrs. Liuaki Fusitu’a

On August 6 2021, Mrs. Liuaki Fusitu’a, member of the Niuafo’ou translation team, passed away. Below is an obituary by the translation team.

R.I.P. Ms Liuaki Kovi Mei ‘Aotea Mo‘ungaafi Fusitu‘a

In the year 2006 Ms Liuaki Fusitu’a, as she was known then and now, while working as principal of the Tonga Institute of Education, was chosen as one of the pioneer members of the Niuafo’ou Bible Translation team. The other team members were:
RIP Rev Penisimani Mone – lecturer, Sia’atoutai Theological Institute,
RIP Rev Folauhola Taukafa – lecturer, Sia’atoutai Theological Institute,
Rev Henelī Vete – minister of Free Wesleyan Church, Lapaha village,
Mrs Hengihengi Taufaeteau – loan officer, MBf Bank, Nuku’alofa,
Mrs ‘Akata Savou Lui – Education Officer, Primary Schools Division, Ministry of Education and Training ,
Mr Le’akona Lotulelei – undergraduate student at Sia’atoutai Theological Institute, and is now principal of Free Wesleyan Church primary school, Vaotu’u Village, Tongatapu,
Mr Sitiveni Tu’ilautala – outgoing Chief Education Officer for Property Management, Ministry of Education and Training, now retired.

Ms Liuaki Fusitu’a’s fields of teaching were History and the English Language. Because of her expertise in the field of linguistics, Liuaki was instrumental in encouraging our team members to focus our translation not only on preserving our Niuafo’ou language, but ensuring that the translation truly follows the Niuafo’ou style of vocal communication, especially in tones and word arrangements, instead of “word for word” translation from the Tongan Moulton Bible. Although Liuaki herself is only half Niuafo’ou (only her father is from Niuafo’ou), her pride as a Niuafo’ou citizen was clearly seen by everyone who knew her. Her contributions to our translation tasks had always been more than we had expected. Her unforgettable smiling face was always full of encouragement and her radiant and joyous life made her well known and liked, especially so when she became a born-again Christian in 2010. This made Liuaki the person she became in the last eleven years of her life. She displayed a life that was full of faith, joy, wisdom, outgoing love, courage and peace that could only emanate from someone who had the Lord Jesus Christ truly living and shining in her life, and flowing out from her to all around.

We truly miss you Liuaki. But we understand that since it is God’s holy will that you take the lead to our beautiful home in heaven, we, the remaining members of our Niuafo’ou translation team, have been truly encouraged by your unforgettable character to complete the task that He has commissioned for us to do and to complete. May you rest in peace.

From Mrs Hengihengi Taufaeteau, Mrs ‘Ākata Lui, Mr Le’akona Lotulelei and Mr Sitiveni Tu’ilautala.

Niuafo’ou Translation team members, left to right:
Mr Sitiveni Tu’ilautala, Mrs Hengihengi Taufaeteau, Mrs ‘Akata Lui,
RIP Ms Liuaki Fusitu’a and Director of Wycliffe Tonga Mission, Mr Maxy Koloamatangi