A Catholic missionary who spent 68 years working in Kenya has died. The Consolata missionary, Fr Peter Davoli IMC, died on Ash Wednesday, March 1, in Italy, sixteen days before his 95th birthday. Born in 1911, Fr Davoli came to Kenya in 1936 and left in 2004. He is remembered for his work in the Archdiocese of Nyeri and Marsabit Diocese. A few years after his arrival, Fr Davoli was arrested by the British colonial government in 1940 during the Second World War and detained at Kabete near Nairobi. He was thereafter moved to South Africa, where he spent three years at Koffiefontain POW Camp. Upon his return in 1943, the missionary went to work in Nyeri for 32 years. A keen mountaineer, Fr Davoli climbed Mount Kenya some 33 times. He celebrated his 50th anniversary of priesthood at Lenana Point on the mountain in 1985. In 1975, he moved to Marsabit, where he started the parishes of Sololo, South Horr, Maralal and Baragoi (the last two are now in Maralal Diocese). On August 20, 2004, a few months after he left Kenya, Fr Davoli wrote from a home for retired missionaries the following farewell letter: "Looking at my passport I notice that today I should be back in Kenya. I am not coming in person, but only in this letter: this is my return. I departed with the hope of a appy return, but the Lord had a different plan and I believe that it is for my own good. His will be done! "As from July 27, I am in Alpignano, the oldest member of the house, together with other infirm confreres. I tell you, there is a lot to learn. The care they have for us here couldn't be better. It comes often to my mind the one we left and the 100 we are receiving. I often think: Will there be a real place in Heaven after the heaven we are living here on earth? "I take this opportunity to thank you and all the confreres for all you have done for me. I am deeply grateful. The body is far, but the mind and the spirit are still, and always, in Africa." May the Lord Jesus Christ grant Fr Peter Davoli the gift of eternal rest. Source: CISA
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