Ode to Brother Alexander

From: Franklyn <f_tahcia@tpg.com.au>
Date: Thursday, November 25, 2010, 3:14 PM

Hi Guys,

I received an email from my good mate John Fernando (stationed in Singapore) that he visited our very Rev. Brother Alexander in Colombo, who is seriously ill in hospital and I thought that I should let you guys know as to what a dedicated Director he was at St. Benedict’s College, in the 1980’s.  He did make a massive contribution to the development of our old school and rightly deserves this recognition.


He was a small made man, little in size (Pint size is what they used to call it) but a man with a tremendously huge,

kind and sensitive heart, who was always looking for ways and means of creating ideas for the uplifting,  progress

and success of my old school ST. BENEDICT’S COLLEGE.  He made decisions that enabled St. Benedict’s College, reach

the heights of all the  leading schools in the country. He started this revival and we owe him plenty for doing this.

Brother Alexander was a great motivator and had the ability to encourage us Bens to make use of the lessons we learnt

while in College and make good  use of it for the benefit of our old school and also all human kind.

I was just one who benefited from Rev. Brother Alexander’s approach to life and he did demonstrate to me what we could

achieve should we join hands together for the benefit of our school.  It was his sheer motivation and the

confidence he instilled in me and many others, that gave us all the encouragement and courage to do things  for our

old school and for other human beings that we would not have been able to achieve as individuals.

I first met this kind gentleman  as a teacher when I got to the sixth Standard, the class room next to the famous “Bell” of ours.

He was a straight talker and we all knew where we stood with him, no “ifs” no “buts” but positive action.  No negativity.

A man with strict principles. I have always considered it a privilege to have had this individual as one of my educators.

I was one of the lucky ones, and  I know many others  will feel the same way too. What an individual, what a human being.

Those were the good old days. Memories are made of this!

I renewed my close acquaintance with Brother Alexander when he was the Director in College in the 80’s and  I was social

secretary of the OBU. As I had already organized two carnivals for the Lions Movement, He made a request of me to organize

a carnival to raise the much needed funds for the Old school in the year 1985. This was one of my proudest moments in my entire lifetime.

He was an inspiration because it was almost impossible to say “No” to what he did ask for. That was the magic in the man.

No pushing and shoving with the requests he made, just a kind throwaway line, together with that wry mischievous smile which said it all.

He would rub his hands together and say “Come on guys you can do it” was one of his famous sayings, just to quote a few.

Working with this individual was such a great pleasure. Not only did he motivate me but so many other

old school mates too, and I am sure they are all aware as to who they are? Every individual made their dedicated contribution and

would take his task seriously which made anything we undertook so very easy. This was a great team.  Brother Alexander made it happen.

As the word spread around I was really astounded to receive hundreds of calls from old and young Bens offering their assistance.

This had never happened before. That was the response this man was able to get from those who were never in the scene.

Everyone wanted to be a part of it and make their Contributions to the cause. What a great feeling that was!.

Like I have already stated there were many who were part and parcel of this event but I feel very  proud to mention the names of some

individuals who made great contributions to the cause, and have gone before us, they are the late Peter Prins, Cletus Gomez,

Frank Thalayaratne and Colonel Joe Caspersz. They were part of the team that was built around Bro Alexander, together with the brilliant

hardworking team of thinkers and contributors credit to all of this must go to our dear Brother Alexander.

No one wanted to let him down and that was the Alexander inspiration. He did have something special.

The whole team put in their heart and soul to make a success of this project under his guidance and I am fully aware of the delight

and happiness shown by each and everyone at the end of the fourth and final night of this project.

This Carnival titled ‘JULY BREEZE” ran for four nights and raised 1.2 Million approximately $66,000.00 at the time.This gave the

School the bounce it required to enable us to match the leading schools in the country in all its educational activities.

“IT WAS MISSION ACCOMPLISHED” and who was that Hero, yes it was Brother Alexander, He started the revival.

Dear Brother, You have done us proud,  we salute you for what you have been to all of us,  especially for the contributions you have made to

make our Old school St. Benedict’s College, what it is today. We raise our “Hats” to you. God be with you and we hope you recover soon.

Cheers mate.

Franklyn Holsinger

Melbourne Victoria – AUSTRALIA


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