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“Au revoir, Peter Knauer”

On 28 June 2018, after 15 happy and fruitful years in the Saint Benedict Community in Brussels, Fr Peter Knauer, a German Jesuit, moved to the house of elderly Jesuits in Berlin Kladow, after having recently suffered a minor brain stroke. Some days before leaving, he celebrated his festive goodbye mass together with “his” Spanish-speaking community of the Foyer Catholique Européen, where he had been working in a pastoral role for many years. The mass was presided by Fr Jose de Pablo, representing the President of the Conference of European Provincials, Fr Franck Janin.

It was not only because of his reputation as an excellent theologian and a highly appreciated chaplain and companion that Peter was famous in Brussels. All his different activities reflected very well the Ignatian adage “en todo amar y servir”: the pastoral work in his Spanish community, where he has left a big part of his heart; the Eucharists and spiritual accompaniment in many languages (including Esperanto) in the Foyer Catholique, the Chapel for Europe and the German-speaking community; the retreats he used to lead; books and articles he was still writing, and, last but not least, his care for the community and the famous “Peter Pan” – the bread he baked every day.   

Peter, thank you for everything and may God bless you in your new home! As Berlin is not extremely far away from Brussels, this is not “farewell” – but “au revoir”. And, in the meantime, Skype will certainly help to reduce the distance.

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