Tag Archive | "FR. JOE DE MEL"



Fr. Joe de Mel was a Josephian legend

Posted on 24 March 2014 by admin

Fr.-Joe-March-22532dbe9d59046.jpgRev. Fr.Joe de Mel who passed away last week was a blue blooded Josephian, as blue as they came. He was an outstanding cricketer at the Darley Road school and many were his achievements that are etched in the record books of Josephian cricket. Unusual, I would add for men of the cloth. Standing over six feet, Fr. Joe was a feared fast medium bowler, a brilliant fielder quick of eye and a twinkle toed batsman who did not respect any bowling attack when he was wielding the willow.

By Elmo Rodrigopulle

According to my former colleague and Old Josephian M.J.M. Aka ‘Zorro’, Zarook who watched Fr.Joe performing for St.Joseph’s said he was a stylist in batting and played under Malcolm de Costsa and Neil Weerasinghe. His brother Cletus was a hard hitting opening batsman. Fr.. Joe would certainly have sported the country’s colours in cricket, had not the call from god come to shed pads and bat and join in the vineyard serve the lord and give praise and spread the gospel of the Lord. But Fr.Joe did not lose his thirst and hunger for the game he loved best and played with great respect. He would never miss a ‘stag nite’ and Joe-Pete big match and when invited to do commentary on radio did so with great knowledge and aplomb. Fr.Joe gave up playing cricket when he joined the seminary. Had he continued, he would have been Sri Lanka’s Rev.David Sheppard who donned pads for England when in robes.

Fr. Joe who hailed from an illustrious family was Chairman, ‘Samata Sarana’, former Vicar General, Archdiocese of Colombo, former Rector, National Seminary, Ampitiya.

A little anecdote – On the eve of our wedding day, the priest who was to say our wedding mass and give us in marriage Fr. Amirthapillai could not be contacted because he had gone on holiday to Nuwara Eliya. I was running around. But my Sports Editor at that time in the ‘Times’ Ramsay Zieglaar managed to contact Fr.Rufus Benedict who was then in charge of Peterite cricket who promised to do the needful. When I nervously arrived at St. Mary’s Church, Bambalapitiya where our marriage was to be solemnized, hey presto there was Fr. Amirthapillai, and standing by were Fr. Rufus Benedict and Fr. Joe de Mel. Fr. Rufus and Fr. Joe were aware of my achievements at cricket, having captained St.Benedict’s College and taking a hat trick against St.Peter’s College when Fr.Rufus was master in charge and five wickets against St.Joseph’s whose cricket Fr.Joe would not miss and were on the ready to help out. He respected the “googly” that I had bowled to my wife Gina!

Fr.Joe was laid to rest on Monday at Kanatte. May the turf that he walked with great distinction and respect lie softly on him. Our deepest sympathies to his family and all his loved ones.


Comments Off on Fr. Joe de Mel was a Josephian legend


Rev. Fr. Joe de Mel: Final Rites on March 24th at Kanatte

Posted on 21 March 2014 by admin

Very Rev Fr. JOE DE MEL (Chairman, ‘Samata Sarana’, former Vicar General, Archdiocese of Colombo, Former Rector, National Seminary Ampitiya). Youngest son of late Thomas and Clara de Mel, Brother of Claire, Royce, Maurice, Etta, Rodney, Carl and Cletus (pre deceased) entered Eternal Rest. Remains will be at Samata Sarana, 531, Aluthmawatta, Road, Mutwal, Colombo – 15, from Saturday, 22nd to Monday 24th of March 2014. After Holy Mass of Thanksgiving on Monday 24th March at 8.00 a.m. Cortege will proceed to Sacred Heart Chapel, Archbishop’s House, Borella. Holy Mass at Archbishop’s House at 2.00 p.m. followed by Final Rites at Kanatte, RC Section. No flowers by request. Donations to Samata Sarana.


March 21, 2014 – News has reached us of the passing of Rev. Fr. Joe de Mel – a colossus among mankind and well known humanitarian known to many. Coming from a renowned Roman Catholic family he joined the priesthood and continued his vocation to help the poor and set up "Samata Sarana" – an orphanage for the poor and destitute.

Cover photo shows Fr. Joe with his illustrious brothers> The de Mel brothers (standing from left): Cletus de Mel, Carl de Mel, Rev. Fr. Joe de Mel. (Seated from left): Rodney de Mel, Royce de Mel, Maurice de Mel.

An inspiring sportsman who had his baptism to cricket at his Alma Mater – St. Joseph's College, Colombo – Fr. Joe led the team to a great 7-run victory in 1948 in the Big Match against St. Peter's College. 
Fr. Joe was a great friend of St. Peter's College as well and had many friends from both schools who supported his humanitarian goals.
The funeral will be on Monday, 24th March.
May the Lord grant him eternal rest.

Dear All,


With great sadness we announce the demise of our beloved Old Joe, Rev.Fr.Joe De Mel this (21st) afternoon. The body will be brought to Semata Sarana main Center at No. 531, Aluthmawatha Road Mutwal, Colombo – 15. (Phone: 0094-11-252 4583 Fax: 0094-11-252 3046) at 9.00 am on Saturday the 22nd and remain there till Monday.

On Monday the 24th at 9.00 am the body will be brought to Archbishops House, Borella.

Holy Mass would be celebrated at 2.00 pm on Monday the 24th and thereafter burial at the General Cemetery, Borella.

As we all know Fr.Joe is a legendary Old Joe and as such we request your gratuitous presence at all above times and most importantly for your prayerful participation at the Holy Mass at Archbishops House on Monday 2.00 pm preferably in the OBU /College tie.

Please circulate to all Old Joe's in your mailing list.

May the Grace of God and Peace be with you.

Senaka Ranasinghe (Justice of Peace – All Island )

Tel : +94 757723900, +94 770445629.

skype Phone : senakaskype

John 3 : 16 "For God so loved the world that he gave us his one and only Son (Jesus), that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life"




Comments Off on Rev. Fr. Joe de Mel: Final Rites on March 24th at Kanatte

Advertise Here
Advertise Here
%d bloggers like this: