Italian Friar Who Dedicated Life To Pakistan’s Poor Passes Away
Padre Aldino Amato, an Italian-born Dominican friar who served as the last foreign missionary with the Faisalabad Diocese, has died on the 1st of May. Padre Amato was a long serving and much loved educationist and developmnt pioneer.
The friar had been on ventilator for more than a week after having contracted Covid-19. He was buried in a grave that he had prepared for himself in the compound of Our Lady of Mercy parish house in Chak 6, Okara.
Ordained into the Dominican order in 1957, Padre Amato came to Pakistan as a missionary five years after that. He decided to stay on and serve the poor in Pakistan rather than leave.
Padre Aamto’s lifetime of efforts in Pakistan included the construction of six churches, three schools with hostels, two training centres for blind people, two housing colonies and a college for women.
Faisalabad’s Bishop Idrias Rehmat said of him:
“He happily spent money in remote areas and turned them into settlements. The Pakistani Church will always remember him. He was a humble sufi who silently distributed education and mercy. While our community has a trend of settling abroad, the legendary missionary adopted our values and the poor.”
Dominican prior Father Younas Shahzad noted:
“He was a supporter of the poor irrespective of their faith. He used to gather children from their homes to attend school and inquire after those who took leave. People used to consult him in crisis, while several families got free monthly rations from shops. By planting tube wells, he turned forests into colonies.”