EUROPE/ITALY - Mgr. Mazzolari, a missionary in Sudan for 30 years

Wednesday, 28 September 2016 missionary institutes   development   missionary animation   dialogue

Concesio (Agenzia Fides) - The missionary commitment and service of Mgr. Cesare Mazzolari (1937-2011), who spent 30 years of his life in sub- Saharan Africa, in Sudan, will be remembered thanks to a biographical exhibition which will open on September 30 at the Paul VI Institute Study Center, in Concesio (Brescia), as informs the note sent to Fides. The exhibition, entitled "Person for others", will trace the main stages of the life of the missionary in Africa, through eleven large display panels, and will open with a meeting-encounter with some operators in the humanitarian sector in South Sudan who knew or collaborated with him and continue to do so today through the Onlus CESAR Foundation in Concesio. The exhibition will remain open until 15 October.
Mgr. Mazzolari was born in Brescia on February 9, 1937, he joined the Comboni Missionaries (MCCJ) and was ordained a priest on 17 March 1962. After a first missionary experience in the United States among the African Americans and Mexicans, in 1981 he arrived in Sudan, where he worked in the diocese of Tombura-Yambio, then the Archdiocese of Juba, finally in the diocese of Rumbek (now South Sudan). He was ordained a Bishop on 6 January 1999 by Pope John Paul II. He died on July 16, 2011 after suffering a seizure during the celebration of morning Mass, a few days after the celebration of the independence of South Sudan which he had attended. As Fides reports, the Lake States (of which Rumbek is the capital) declared three days of national mourning for his death. In order to allow the entry into the church of the huge number of men and women, Catholics but also Muslims and animists, who came from every corner of the country to pay tribute to Mgr. Mazzolari, the doors of Rumbek Cathedral remained open day and night. According to his wish, the Bishop was buried in the Cathedral. (SL) (Agenzia Fides 28/09/2016)