Fr. Peter Kurukula Aratchi was from Ampitiya, Kandy and came under the influence of the Jesuits of the Seminary and of the parish. There was a group of young men who joined the ranks of the Jesuits from Ampitiya and Peter was one of them. Peter joined the Novitiate at Calicut together with many other Sri Lankans, most of whom eventually left. He did his studies in Pune and Manila where he also specialized in Rural Development.
Fr. Peter joined Fr. Stefanizzi for rural development at Dehiowita. He approached the little people in the villages and tried to bring up their lives with little projects. His contacts were at a lower and smaller level. For many years he was involved with people of Trincomalee, Nilaveli, China bay, Kantale, Gantalawa and the Sugar Factory. As a member of the local peace committee he worked much for reconciling different races, cultural and religious groups. He was a well recognized citizen of a town where all three races were equally represented. He kept in touch with the Alumni of St. Aloysius’ College, as the Jesuit in Attendance. He was involved with their families and lives as a mentor. A similar service he rendered to the diocesan priests and the Religious of Kandy. Until the end, he organized the activities of the OBA of Berraewerts’ College, Ampitiya. Besides he also served as Provincial of Sri Lanka, and as Pastor, as Superior and Director of Institutions.
Peter had the knack of moving with all classes of people. He related with and served them equally well. He returned to the Lord on 16th June 2021.
Fr. Baylon Perera, SJ