Mai Mahiu Catholic Church, also known as the ‘Travelers Church’, was built by Italian prisoners of war in 1942. The building went up despite great challenges, such was their dedication to worship. It is the smallest church in the country.
The pentagon-like shaped church interior has four small wooden pews, an altar with a pulpit and measures about 15 feet x 8 feet. The church has three normal doors for access. The inside walls of the pentagon-shaped church are decorated with inscriptions in Latin and symbols that capture the triumphant mood of the moment. On the inside of the chapel, above the stained glass windows and the entrance doors are painted the words Venite Ad Memone (Come to me my people), Haec Est Victoria Quae Vincit Mundum Fides Mustra (This is the victory that has won the world by our faith), Benedicite Coeli Domino Benedicite (Blessed be the sky and blessed again). There is a peculiar one that, translated, means ‘everything will germinate in the sky and also on the earth’ (Universa Germinatia In Terra Domino).
Look for a 71-year-old mural of the nativity scene, visit the graves where the deceased soldiers were laid to rest, or take some time to just worship. The church is maintained by the Italian Embassy and the Kenyan government, and various private benefactors.
The doors are open as early as 6 am and close at 5pm.