In 1995, Father John Forliti, Pastor of St. Olaf from 1992 – 2004, established the St. Olaf African Missions when he traveled with five young adults from St. Olaf to Nairobi, Kenya. They returned home and partnered with a Maryknoll Community to raise funds for a variety of Catholic Missions in Kenya.
Father Forliti returned in 2006 with five teachers from Cretin-Derham Hall. This marked the first of three trips to Africa for former St. Olaf staff member, Mary Brady. During the next nine years, additional fundraising efforts supported specific projects in Nairobi, Robondo and Busia.
For many years, the people of St. Olaf Catholic Church and the people of the Catholic Churches in the villages of Busia, Bulanda, Mwari, Kakurikit, Kiamwangi, and Ojamii in Kenya worked together. Understanding of each other’s culture developed and respect for the richness of African cultures deepened. A robust community of Africans from various nations help make up the character and culture of St. Olaf.
Every third Sunday, our African Choir, comprised of members from four or five African nations, ministers at our Sunday 12:00 Noon Mass. It is an enlivening and meaningful liturgical experience.