Mass Upon the Top of Africa

Fr. Antony Sumich FSSP Atop Mt. Kilimanjaro
Fr. Antony Sumich FSSP Atop Mt. Kilimanjaro

Fr. Antony Sumich, FSSP, chaplain of our Calgary apostolate, and Fr. Gregory Bartholomew, FSSP, currently stationed at Christ the King in Sarasota, recently ventured to Africa. There they traveled to Tanzania, where they ascended Mount Kilimanjaro – the highest point on the continent.

Once there, both offered the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. What follows is Fr. Sumich’s account of the day:

Pax Christi,

This (pictured above) is where I said Mass on Wednesday, 30th September 2015.

The top of Kilimanjaro is nearly 6,000 metres (19,341 feet) above sea level.

Needless to say, it was a little hard to breathe after the 7-½ hours it took to walk up there! But mainly the difficulty breathing was from the altitude.

The table I used, and the altar and Mass vestments, etc., were carried up by our porters. One of them (who we gave the name “table-guy”) literally carried a table strapped on his back the whole way up. After my Mass, Fr. Gregory Bartholomew said his Mass also.

We prayed a lot, and our porters & guides joined us in daily Mass, and prayers for good weather. Our prayers were answered and the temperature stayed at about +5 C deg (low 40s F), there was no wind whatsoever (very rare) during the two hours we spent at the top.

The Mass was attended by a number of Tanzanian guides who were so happy to see Our Blessed Lord physically on top of Africa.

October 6, 2015