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St. Mary Magdalen's
Catholic Church
Willesden Green
London NW10
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Saturday, June 12, 2010
I left the familiar surroundings and people with a heavy heart. But I was overwhelmed by the welcome received from the moment I stepped out of the airport. I haven’t felt that I am in a foreign land. There were members from the Sri Lankan community along with Fr David Irwin, co-ordinator of the Ethnic Chaplains, to greet me. Fr Hugh welcomed me with open arms and did not even for a moment allow me to feel that I am away from home. I met a few of those who are actively involved in Church activities and they were all very friendly and their encouraging words meant a lot to me. I would also like to mention the amiable Fr Kieran who helped me to feel more homely and relaxed.

I come from a beautiful island called Sri Lanka hailing from a family of seven members. My full name is Anslem Norman Rohitha Rodrigo. I joined the seminary when I was 13 years old and was ordained in 1997. After my ordination I served in two parishes as the assistant parish priest where I really enjoyed my priestly life as a pastor. After two years I was asked to serve in a catholic school in Colombo namely St Joseph’s College where about 4000 students are being educated. After serving there for four and a half years I was sent to another catholic school where 4500 students study, namely St Peter’s College. I was the Principal of the Primary section for six and a half years until the day I left my country to come over here.

I am here as the Chaplain for the Sri Lankan community where I will try my best to look into their spiritual needs and to build up the community. At the same time I wish to help the parish in whatever way I can and also study for my Masters Degree in Education.

With God’s blessings and your prayers I hope my stay here in Willesden Green will be a fruitful one for you as well as for me.

May God bless you all !
Fr Rohitha

posted by Sinead Reekie at 1:19 pm