The Italian Chapel (Chapel of St. Francis)

CategoryHistorical Site
LocationMasvingo
Status Open now

This Chapel was built by the Italian Prisoners of war of the 5th Camp extension cap of Masvingo during the years 1942 and 1946 in memory of their fellow-men. Most of the prisoners of war originated from Ethiopia. Here the remains of 71 prisoners of war who died in captivity are interred. Other camps were situated in Harare, Kadoma, Gweru, Mvuma, Shuruhwi and Chipinge.

The paintings and Mosaics of the apse are the works of an Italian Civil Engineer, who was himself a prisoner of War. A caretaker is on duty every day. A mass is celebrated each Saturday morning and each year on the 1st Sunday in November, a special memorial service is held in honour of those Italians who died in the two World Wars.

The Chapel of St Francis is situated approximately 5kms from the Information Centre along the Mutare Road.