posted Jan 4, 2019, 8:47 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Jan 4, 2019, 8:47 AM ]

Fr Vernon De Souza

Born in Kampala, Uganda, on June 25, 1930, Vernon de Souza joined the Diocesan Seminary in Parel, and was sent for his theological studies to the Papal Seminary, Pune. He was ordained a priest on October 3, 1959. He died on February 6, 2018, and was buried at St Andrew Church, Bandra, on December 11, 2018.

As we look back over the 59 years of Fr Vernon de Souza's ministry in the Archdiocese of Bombay, three qualities strike me:

First of all, he was a caring person. I have experienced this trait personally. I joined the Diocesan Seminary in Parel in 1954. I came as a raw young boy, just 14 years old, straight from Kenya. Vernon, who hailed from Uganda, was already in his fifth year in the seminary. He took me under his fraternal care, and guided my first steps in the seminary.

But this was not only to me personally. It was the same with several other seminarians too. Most of the seminarians joined immediately after their SSC. Vernon had finished his B.Sc. before joining. With his tall - I could say, 'imposing' – height, he was like a father figure to many of us. And this continued later on as a priest. So many priests and people would approach him. Many will miss Vernon as a friend, a guide and mentor.