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Cardinal Felix: a source of immense pride for Dominica

The following tribute to Cardinal Kelvin Felix was done by Msgr William John-Lewis, Delegate of the Apostolic Administrator, Diocese of Roseau.

The Catholic community is deeply saddened by the passing of His Eminence Cardinal Kelvin Edward Felix, the first English-speaking Cardinal appointed for the Antilles Episcopal Conference.

Cardinal Felix was a pillar of faith and service, whose pastoral involvement and contributions significantly impacted both his native Diocese of Roseau and the Archdiocese of Castries, St Lucia.

Born in Dominica, Cardinal Felix’s journey of service began in the Diocese of Roseau, where he was known for his dedication to the spiritual and social upliftment of his community. His leadership was marked by a profound commitment to education, social justice, and the well-being of the less fortunate.

As the Archbishop of Castries, Cardinal Felix’s pastoral influence was profound and far-reaching. He shepherded his flock with compassion, wisdom, and unwavering dedication, ensuring that the spiritual and pastoral needs of his community were met with utmost care. His commitment to the people of Castries earned him deep respect and affection, solidifying his legacy as a cherished spiritual leader.

Cardinal Felix’s contributions extend beyond his archdiocese. His work with the Caribbean Conference of Churches (CCC) showcased his dedication to unity and ecumenism.

Serving in a leadership role within the CCC, he championed the cause of unity, renewal, and joint action among the churches of the Caribbean, fostering collaboration and solidarity across denominational lines.

His concern for the training and formation of priests was a testament to his foresight and dedication to the future of the Church. He believed in nurturing and guiding new generations of clergy, ensuring they were well-prepared to serve their communities with faith and integrity.

Cardinal Kelvin Felix’s legacy extends beyond his ecclesiastical achievements to his profound impact as an educator and mentor. Serving as Principal of St Mary’s Academy, a prestigious Catholic boys’ high school in Roseau, Dominica, Cardinal Felix played a pivotal role in shaping the lives of countless young men.

Under his leadership, St Mary’s Academy not only excelled academically but also emphasised the importance of moral and spiritual development, adhering to its motto ‘Ora et Labora’ – Pray and Work.

Cardinal Felix’s dedication to education was reflected in his holistic approach, nurturing both the intellectual and spiritual growth of his students. His tenure as principal was marked by a commitment to excellence and a compassionate understanding of the challenges faced by young men.

Cardinal Felix’s contributions to education and his role as a mentor have left an indelible mark on the community, fostering a legacy of leadership, faith, and service that will endure for generations.

Known for his humility, Cardinal Felix preferred to be called ‘Father Felix’ rather than ‘His Eminence’, reflecting his approachability and deep connection with the people he served.

His humility and kindness left a lasting impression on all who knew him, and his efforts towards social welfare, education, and healthcare have left an enduring legacy.

Cardinal Felix’s achievements are a source of immense pride for Dominica. His life and work are a testament to his unwavering faith, his commitment to the Church, and his love for his people. His passing is a significant loss.

However, he has left an indelible mark on the Caribbean and the wider world, and his legacy of faith, service and humility will continue to inspire future generations.

We honour and celebrate His Eminence Cardinal Kelvin Felix for his invaluable contributions to the Church and society. He has indeed done us proud.

May he rest in peace, and rise in glory!