The following is a letter from Fr. Paddy Kelly SMA, received on July 30th


Kanisa Katoliki.
Mwandoya, Mobile
Ph. No:+255 784 641 282                                                                                     S.L.P. 130
Maswa, Shinyanga
Tanzania. E. Africa.
2nd July'07

Dear Friend,
Greetings and best wishes to you and to all good friends and neighbours in and around Laurencetown. It has been a long time since I wrote to you last. [September 1990, see extract from 1990 newsletter overleaf.] If the memory is still functioning well the last time was while I was still in Nigeria. Then again I didn't want to be overburdening you with the many problems and difficulties we experience & encounter in the course of our work here in Africa. In truth it can be said that I only remember you when such problems become overpowering and I'm forced to admit, in all humility, that we need all the help we can be offered if we are to be fruitful in some shape & form. It is because of this that I have decided to write you this letter, while at the same time remembering your kind words of encouragement when we meet during my trips home to Laurencetown.
Many times I have informed you of the situation here in our parish of Mwandoya & in Tanzania as a whole, & also being aware of your own awareness of the entire situation of much of Africa, so, therefore, I believe that I have no reason to exhaust you with the details of the situations we encounter here on a daily basis.
In the parish I have 30 villages with a population of over 100,000. With the limited resources at hand I try to offer the people some of the services that will enhance their lives in some way. However, it's like chipping away at an iceberg. Since it is the Lord's work I continue to hope that one day things will be better.
As the workload is getting bigger our Society (SMA Fathers) have decided to give me another priest, a native of Ivory Coast, W. Africa. He is hoping to join me here in Oct of this year. As the Mission House is very small we decided to extend it by building three rooms. Already the building has reached roofing level which we are now completing. To complete the work and amenities we need help in the area of €3,000. With this letter I'm appealing to you, to my friends and : ,;, neighbours in and around Laurencetown to come to our aid in some way.
While appealing for aid through this letter, I'm deeply aware of the kindness and generosity which the people of Laurencetown have shown me down through the years. I have tried to express this but no words are adequate enough to convey my true gratitude. Only God, out of His love and kindness, can do that.
My sister Patricia & brother-in-law Tommy Clarke came to visit me last year. What they saw & experienced, I believe, will remain deep in their memory & especially in their hearts. Back home they have tried to help us here personally & by appealing to their friends, neighbours & co-workers. As we all know it is impossible to say when the problems of Africa will become less & more so their effects become less severe on the people. At the same time we continue to search for ways to ease some of the burdens but we cannot do it alone.
So it is with this letter I beg & implore you to come to our aid here in the parish of Mwandoya. May God continue to fill your hearts with the spirit of generosity, fellowship & compassion for all his people.
                                                             Your friend & brother in Christ,
                                                                   Paddy Kelly SMA.


Item from the Lawrencetown parish newsletter of September 16th 1990:

Fr. Paddy Kelly S.M.A. has sent a letter telling of his work in his new parish in Nigeria. ... He finds it very difficult. His major problem is his mode of transport. He says that the vehicle which he is now using is a daily source of mechanical breakdown and is becoming totally unfit for repairs. He says that there is a vehicle on offer for approximately IR£4000 which would go a long way to assist his work and which is of sound condition. He realizes that this is an enormous sum. He feels embarrassed to he asking for more help in the light of the generosity which he experienced in the past from the people of the parish and surrounding districts, but he is obviously very frustrated and is fearful that his new project will fail. He says that he needs a reply one way or the other by the end of September.
If you would like to help Fr Paddy, you can give your donation to me or to any member of the parish council. As it is unlikely that we can raise the full amount quickly by direct donations, would it he possible for some people in the parish to give interest-free loans so that the £4000 can he sent to Fr Paddy immediately? These loans would he repayable in full on demand or in any case within two years. The parish council will set up a committee to organise fund-raising to repay the loans. If you wish to contribute to the loan fund you can do so to me or to any member of the parish council. I have asked the members of the parish council to meet with me after 8.00 p.m. Mass on next Tuesday evening.
Our thanks to the GAA and the committee of the Kiltormer Social Centre for offering the proceeds of the dance there next Friday night (September 21st) for Fr Paddy. Music is by Declan Nerney. Please support this dance and encourage all your friends to go.



In December 2003 the Lawrencetown Community Enterprise Company opened an account (No. 65508462) at the Bank of Ireland, Ballinasloe (branch code: 90-36-80) for people who wished to support Fr. Paddy's work, either by making occasional lodgements or by standing order. If you would like to help Fr. Paddy in his moment of extreme need, please make your donation to this account or give it to me or to any member of the Pastoral Council.