A commemorative Mass in remembrance and thanksgiving for the life of Bro Steve Solomon was held at the Church of the Blessed Sacrament, Grand Anse in Grenada on Wednesday, November 15. Chief celebrant and homilist was Bishop Emeritus Sydney Charles. Concelebrating was Fr Dermot Nolan, Spiritual Director of the St Vincent de Paul Society, Grenada.
In his homily Bishop Charles, in his usual unique style recounted his encounter with Bro Steve Solomon at the Monastery, Mount St Benedict. He posited that Bro Steve’s formation at the monastery with its motto – prayer and work – would have had a great influence in Bro Steve becoming the father of the SVP establishment throughout the Caribbean.
|Bro Matthias Joseph, national president of SVP, Grenada, presents a plaque to Bro Anthony Wong Doo, national president, SVP, T &T, in memory of the late Bro Steve Solomon for his contribution to the growth of the SVP in Grenada
Bishop Charles stressed that the Society must be rooted in prayer and the Eucharist to overcome the challenges of the work. The bishop drew reference to the lives of St Martin of Tours, St Vincent de Paul, Blessed Teresa of Calcutta and the late Pope John Paul II.
During the Mass Brother Anthony Wong Doo was presented with a commemorative plaque in honour of Bro Steve. He thanked the National Council of Grenada for their magnanimous gesture of love and indicated that the presentation of the plaque was timely since Trinidad and Tobago is on the threshold of celebrating 150 years of the SVP in Trinidad and Tobago in 2007.
Bro Wong Doo took the opportunity to invite the National Council of Grenada, as well as Bishop Charles and Fr Dermot Nolan, to be present for the grande finale. This invitation met with the appreciative applause of those present, among who were Srs Ann Celestine, Annmarie and Dominic and about 75 members of the senior and junior conferences in Grenada.
Bro Matthias Joseph, National President of Grenada SVP, traced the history of the SVP founded by Blessed Frederic Ozanam. He remembered Bro Steve’s persistent and passionate drive for alleviating the plight of the poor and marginalised.
Bro Matthias recalled how Bro Steve’s adventure out of compassion to house three HIV-infected orphans from the Port of Spain hospital in the late 80s, evolved, to become one of the flagships of the SVP in Trinidad – the Cyril Ross Nursery in Tunapuna. Bro Steve’s motto was “It can’t be done only if we could not do it.”
After the Mass delicious refreshments prepared by the Grand Anse Conference were shared.