Father Nicodemus Urassa

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Pastor Father Nicodemus Urassa

Father. Nicodemus Urassa has been Parochial Vicar at the Shrine of St. Therese since October, 2011, working with Monsignor Nunez. He officially assumed his pastoral role at both the Our Lady of the Assumption Parish and St. Benedict's Parish on Tuesday, February 21, 2012, and celebrated his first Masses on Ash Wednesday, the following day.

       He came to Pueblo from Tanzania in Eastern Africa. He was born and raised in the foothills of the second highest mountain in the world—Kilimanjaro (19,341’) He lived in a rural village and remembers his mother and father walking two miles each morning to their farm land and walking another two miles each evening to return home. They are both deceased.
   Father Nicodemus Urassa has five brothers and one sister still living in Tanzania. They all spoke Kiswahili (or Swahili) in elementary school as it was the language of their nation. When he entered the high school seminary, he learned English as most of the textbooks were in English. He joined a missionary order, The Apostles of Jesus, and continued with seminary training.
   In 1996 his ordination to the priesthood was held on the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul (usually June 29) It a was a very big and memorable occasion. His parents were in attendance as were other members of his family.
   His first assignment as a newly ordained priest was in a rural area of Kenya, which happened to be a very poor parish. There was a severe drought with farms drying up and food was scarce forcing people to beg at the church. A system was used to give food for work. He was stationed there for six years before his next assignment.
   His next assignments were in South Africa, Europe, and in 2003 he was sent by his order to the United States. What did he notice that was so different? Well, it was the time factor. Everything here was so fast: everyone driving cars which traveled at fast speeds. He was assigned to the Diocese of Cleveland and his primary duty was to serve as a chaplain at one of the hospitals. On weekends, he served as a priest where needed. He described the Cleveland winters as being very cold. He was hoping to do more parish work.    He prayed and looked for another place, and that place was Pueblo. After many interviews and paperwork, Bishop Fernando Isern invited him to serve in Pueblo and now in Westcliffe and Florence.  

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