A priest warmly loved by his flock
Father de Rotz, who gave himself wholeheartedly to relief work in Sotome, is still referred to affectionately by the local people as "Doro-sama".
“House of de Rotz” is an General Incorporated Association of around 10 members that wishes to pass on the same spirit of love which led Father de Rotz to establish an aid centre. Running Former Shitsu Aid centre (which is owned by the Otsugeno Maria Convent) forms the basis of their activities.
All the members of this organisation are devout Catholics who have been attending Shitsu church since they were children. The ancestors of some of them converted to Catholicism through contact with Father de Rotz. "In Shitsu, the footprints of Doro-sama everywhere remain. I would like people to see these more. In the Former Shitsu Aid centre you can learn about the employment schemes [which the Aid centre ran] at that time, and it’s also possible to try cooking using crops harvested from the land in Kotabira which Doro-sama cleared and cultivated”.
7th November 2014 will mark the 100th anniversary of Father de Rotz's death. People here say that they wish this anniversary to mark a new stage in Shitsu’s history.