Peter To Rot (1912-1945)
“We must be strong.”
Peter To Rot was born and raised in Rakunai, on the island of New Britain, Papua New Guinea, where his family was closely tied to the Catholic Church. After studying, he was appointed as a teacher in the parish of Rakunai.
During the Japanese occupation of New Britain in 1942, To Rot gathered people for prayer, continued to teach, visited the sick, delivered food, and officiated marriages. In 1944, during continued Japanese occupation, To Rot was forbidden to engage in religious activities. He refused and built an underground shelter on his property to bring people together for prayer. He was arrested and killed in 1945. His witness was inspirational.
In 1993, a decree was promulgated by Pope John Paul II regarding the martyrdom of Peter To Rot and he was beatified in 1995.
You can read more about Peter To Rot at the Australian Dictionary of Biography