“Successful organic farming requires practical experience, an understanding of science and a keen eye to observe what is happening in nature.”
– Br Paul Desmarais SJ
The words “thank you” are not enough to express our gratitude for the nearly 50 years of service Br Paul Desmarais SJ devoted to Zambia and the Kasisi Agriculture Training Centre (KATC). Through his vision and leadership, KATC has helped hundreds of farmers attain sustainable livelihoods through organic farming. He has championed sustainable development and caring for the earth, our common home.
Br Paul first came to Zambia in 1971 and worked with the farmers in Kasisi Mission. After initially promoting conventional farming methods, he became an advocate of organic farming following the initial suggestion of Fr David Shulist SJ and after visiting organic farms in Ontario. Since 1990, all the produce coming from KATC have been organic.
In 2017, Br Paul wrote an article for CJI’s newsletter on his journey in Zambia. We share it again here with our friends and supporters: In Zambia: Looking back … looking forward.
We wish Br Paul the best as he moves on to his next adventure.
We also welcome Fr Andrew Simpasa SJ, the incoming director of KATC. Fr Andrew joined the Society of Jesus in 2010. He was Program Manager for the Socioeconomic Development Program at the Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) in Lusaka, Zambia. While at JCTR, he also served at St. Mary’s Parish in the Youth Ministry and Sunday Children’s services. He then studied Theology at Hekima College, Jesuit School of Theology, in Kenya, and undertook further studies at the Jesuit School of Theology at Santa Clara University in Berkeley, California. He was ordained a priest on August 6, 2019 in Lusaka.
Fr Andrew also brings with him over ten years of experience working for government agencies in the fields of human resources, risk assessment, budgets and program management.
We look forward to working with him at KATC.