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Sunday, August 14, 2011
AFRICA: KENYA: RIP CONSOLATA MISSIONARY FR. ANTHONY BELLAGAMBA
CISA REPORT –The Consolata Missionaries are mourning the death of one of their own, Fr Anthony (Tony) Bellagamba, who died on Thursday August 11 in the Nairobi Hospital.
Fr Bellagamba, 84, died at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) while undergoing treatment.
He had been admitted since Sunday July 31 immediately after arriving from his holiday in Italy.
According to Fr Franco Cellana, Regional Superior of the Consolata Missionaries in Kenya, Fr Bellagamba died of heart failure and bronchial infection.
A requiem mass will be held at the Consolata Shrine on Wednesday, August 17, at 10.00am. Another mass will be held at Mathari in Nyeri at 2.00pm where the late priest will be buried.
Fr Cellana described Fr Bellagamba as a great personality in the Consolata congregation who started as a formator before rising to become a professor of theology, and later the Vice General Superior of the Consolata missionaries in Rome.
“He took the mission as something that was in his blood. And people were pleased every time to listen to him,” Fr Cellana said.
The Regional Vice-Superior of Consolata missionaries in Kenya, Fr Joya Hieronymus described the late Fr Bellagamba as an intelligent educationist who authored several books and commentaries among them Mission and Ministry in the Global Church and A commentary of Redemptoris Mission found in the encyclical of the late Pope John Paul II.
Until his death Fr Bellagamba was the postulator of the beatification process of the Servant of God Maurice Cardinal Otunga.
“Fr Tony was a great missionary and a dedicated servant of the Catholic Church. He is now one of our revered ancestors in Christ, one of our living dead. May he rest in peace. He now makes his final journey to God our Father to meet the Servant of God Cardinal Otunga” said Fr Joseph Healey the Chair of the Communications sub-committee on the beatification of Cardinal Otunga.
A former professor of pastoral theology at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA), the late cleric will be greatly remembered for his missionary zeal.
He was born in central Italy in 1927 and ordained priest in 1952. Fr Bellagamba first worked in Kenya in 1958. He served as the Vice General Superior of the Consolata Missionaries in Rome from 1999 to 2005.