He strove to do justice according to the
Tudor De Alwis
I associated closely with Uncle Tudor since my childhood.
In my mind, the judge intertwined with the man, and it is difficult
to appreciate one without addressing the other. Never pompous or
arrogant, he yet earned the respect of those who appeared before
him and also those he dealt with in ordinary life. He achieved this
because he was reasonable and decent. Perhaps, in these times ridden
with crises and disillusionment, these qualities go unnoticed. Not
that Uncle Tudor ever complained. Such things did not matter to
Tudor was the
third son of an officer of the courts in Pasdum Korala, at the time
we were still a colony. As a child he had a somewhat strict but
comfortable upbringing. He studied at St. John's, Panadura with
a reputation for discipline and good results. Latin and the classics
were part of his curriculum. I have heard that he was studious and
mild mannered in school.
was delighted when Tudor took to law. After passing out as an advocate
he practised in the Panadura and Kalutara courts. He also won the
hand of Celine Perera, a pretty solicitor. This was a time when
there were very few female practitioners of the law.
After a short
period he joined the judiciary as a magistrate.
It is said
that society is in transition. The turmoil that pervades the country
doubtlessly affected the judiciary too. Though troubled by the social
chaos around him, Uncle Tudor was clear in his mind what his role
as a judge was. He strove to do justice according to the law.
He did not
believe that a judicial appointment automatically conferred judicial
wisdom on the appointee. A good judge had to work at it everyday.
There were no shortcuts. He studied the law, mastered the facts
and then demanded every argument from the lawyers. There are indeed
many eminent lawyers who paid glowing tribute to his work as a judge.
But all around
him was a nation in the process of losing its sanity. Constitutions
were adopted and discarded, laws were amended and repealed, judges
were hired and fired on a whim, and many judges themselves regarded
the judiciary as a career and some took to manoeuvring themselves
to higher courts over the heads of more capable and often senior
It was widely
thought that some judgements were obviously made to placate the
powers that be. Of course these institutions have now lost most
of their lustre. Uncle Tudor was not one to lose his head. I am
proud that to his last day in the judiciary he maintained the highest
principles of judicial integrity and decorum.
Like all of
us, he had his share of joys and sorrow. I suspect that the loss
of his daughter Shanez in the prime of her life was a blow he never
fully recovered from. But he mourned privately and with dignity.
That was Uncle Tudor, judge and good man.
of just men made perfect."
You, in whose hands her final destiny lay,
Have now dulled her limbs and stilled her voice.
Will You tell her that I came, touched her brow
And whispered my love?
years past blur my eyes
As I remember her laughter and her joy
The tenderness of her hand holding mine
The hours we spoke, the dreams that threaded
And bound to her so strong, the ones she nurtured
Strengthened: cocooned within her courage
And her faith that they would justify, be true
To each act of love, each sacrifice she made
They remain a memory of her immortality
But I stand
aside alone in my futile longing
For she is now no more : can You tell her please
That I kissed her cold feet and pledged my love
As I bid farewell.
'Thaatha' we were privileged by your living and we are
more privileged by your death, thirteen years ago. I say this because
the path to God is more confirmed in us when we reflect on your
We are proud
to say that we are in the process of inheriting your unmatched human
qualities. It brings joy to think of you. These precious memories
will be treasured and appreciated until we meet with our Lord Jesus
Christ, when He comes again to unite all of us and share His glory.
K.A. Wilbert of Wattarantenna, a member of the K.M.C. for
a time, was an honourable man. He won the hearts of everyone.
His life was
dedicated to the service of his fellowmen. He treated all alike,
whether they were rich or poor.
and respected him very much.
A soft spoken,
kind-hearted gentleman, Wilbert has gone to his eternal rest. Goodbye,
dear friend. We shall never, ever forget you. You were our gentleman
the love of God
'Teach me dear Lord to have unfading beauty of a gentle
and quiet spirit which is of great worth in your sight.' - 1 Peter
The third death
anniversary of Rev. Gamini Serasinha fell on September 3. Those
who have had the privilege of associating with Father Gamini, as
we affectionately called him, knew him as a great encourager who
demonstrated the love of God at all times.
life was dedicated to teaching people that the greatest need was
a new relationship with God through the forgiveness of sins. He
ardently believed that 'In all things God works together for good
to them that love Him' (Philippians 1: 12 -18 ).
He was my Parish
Priest at St. Paul's Church, Kandy for several years when I was
a child. My family had a close relationship with him and he visited
our home often to pray with us.
My next encounter
with him was after I moved to Colombo for employment and started
attending St. Mary's and St. John's Church, Nugegoda where he served
had time for all people irrespective of their status.
When I visited
him once in the vicarage he already had some visitors.
When I went
in they were seated comfortably and chatting to him - they were
a blind beggar couple from the Nugegoda super- market.
I once sought
Fr. Gamini's counsel as I was disturbed over an office matter.
me that those who desired to be Christ's disciple should have an
idea of what it meant to carry the cross. He made me realise that
death, though it is the end of a transitory life, meant it was time
to go home to Christ and begin a new life. He let God rule his life
and was prepared to go 'home' at any time.
He worked hard
to bring harmony and goodwill among people.
that if we cared for those who did not have much, God would take
the responsibility of caring for us not only on earth but for eternity.
never took God for granted. He was grateful for the privileges he
received from God and in turn was serious about the responsibilities
given to him.
through every teaching that our commitment and love to God should
be steadfast. Sharing our resources with the needy was a requirement
he stressed on. He believed and trusted in the divine leadership
of Jesus and His power over disease, sincerity, sensitivity, humanity,
love and faith.
- Sanjiv Wijayasinghe
played a unique role in her life
It is four years since the death of my beloved wife Mallika
Abeysirigunewardena (nee Mallika Geraldine Yapa Abeywardena) on
August 23, 1998 at the Kandy General Hospital after a brief illness.
a devout Buddhist in whose life religion played a unique role.
She had her
primary education in the English medium at Vincent Girls' High School,
Batticaloa during the time of renowned Principal G. Craft. Later
she attended Holy Family Convent, Kalutara, St. Thomas' Girls' School,
Matale, St. Bernadette's College, Polgahawela during the period
of the famous Grammarian Principal W.H. Samaranayake, St. Scholastica's
Girls' College, Kandy (now Hemamali Girls' College), Christ Church
College, Kurunegala and lastly St. Ursula's Convent, Badulla. She
had to move from one school to another so frequently because her
father, the late Gerald Edwin Yapa Abeywardena, a senior station
master, was transferred from time to time.
school career she excelled in netball and athletics. Mallika was
a woman of many facets. Having resided in Pilimatalawa, Yatinuwara
for nearly 43 years, there was nobody in the area who did not know
Later on in
life she turned her hand to writing and was the provincial correspondent
for the now defunct 'Sun' and later the 'Times of Ceylon' and 'Daily
who guided me and our children for 40 years is no more. Without
her loving care and affection my life is desolate. When our wonderful
life comes to my mind, my eyes turn teary.
23, 1998 when she passed away in the wee hours of the morning, was
the saddest day in my life. With each passing day, the loneliness
becomes more unbearable. May she attain Ama Maha Nivana - great
blissful Nirvana !